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Paralympic champion Gallagher back on the slopes in PyeongChang

Kelly Gallagher and Gary Smith
Kelly Gallagher and Gary Smith

By Ross Lawson in PyeongChang

She can get knocked down, thrown around, battered and bruised but nothing will keep Bangor’s Kelly Gallagher from getting back up again.

Four years on from becoming Paralympic champion, the visually impaired skier has far from had things her own way, fortunate just to be spending this week at the PyeongChang Winter Games.

A serious crash in training last year saw the 32-year-old dislocate her elbow and break three ribs, in doubt about whether she could even compete again.

But after battling her way back Gallagher continued her PyeongChang experience in Tuesday’s super combined, featuring both the super-G and slalom.

A medal wasn’t to come her way but she and guide Gary Smith are adamant they have a lot to look forward to, rounding off their week with the giant slalom and slalom in South Korea.

“Super-G was good, certainly better than the day before and I worked a bit harder and let go a little bit more, we made a couple of mistakes but I didn’t really tuck in when I needed to and that was the big problem,” she said.

“Then in the slalom it wasn’t our usual nippy and tight-to-the-gate run, I made a couple of mistakes close to the end which pretty much took us to a stop which is never good.

“But I didn’t give up, I kept on going and that’s going to be our motto for the Games, in order to get some good results we have to persevere and bring the training runs to the snow.

“Until we sit down with the coach it’s going to be hard to see what we were missing, I’m quite judgmental immediately after the run whereas in training you just take it for what it is and go again.

“It was hard work, we weren’t really there as well as we could have been.

“Ski racing is a whole heap of recoveries, no run is perfect for anybody – you saw (gold medallist) Henrieta Farkasova have a bit of a wobble close to the end but she won by a second.”

Sainsbury’s is a proud long-term supporter of the British Paralympic Association and a champion of inclusive sport for all. For more information on Sainsbury’s commitment to inclusive sport visit

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