THE PARALYMPIC Games get under way today and an athlete from our area is preparing to make his debut for Team GB.
Wheelcahir racer Jamie Carter from Binbrook had been aiming to secure a place at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio. But the 17-year-old’s talents impressed Games selectors and they offered him a place in the 2012 squad.
More than 60,000 people – and many more TV viewers around the world – will watch Jamie compete in the T34 class 100m and 200m events.
The athlete – coached by Paralympic champion David Weir – is the British 200m record holder and already this year has taken about two seconds off his 100m time.
He has just arrived back in the UK after eight days training with other Team GB athletes at a holding camp in Portugal.
Jamie, who has cerebral palsy, will spend the next few days settling in at the Olympic Village in London ahead of his first race on Tuesday, September 4.
Jamie’s mum Sandra Carter said: “We haven’t heard a lot from him – they really have been concentrating hard on training.
“We’ve had a few e-mails from him and I think he’s getting excited, but a little nervous as well.
“His aim is to get a personal best so he then knows he has done his best. It would be a dream come true if he got into the final.”
Mum Sandra, dad Gary and sister Millie are travelling to London to watch Jamie compete.
Sandra said: “We’ve got lots of different emotions – we’re happy, nervous, it’s weird really. It’s odd not having him around but this is his dream and he’s accomplishing it.
“As long as he does his best that’s mall we can ask.”
Jamie won gold medals in both the 100m and 200m events at the Sainsbury’s School Games held at the Olympic Park in May this year.
Jamie races on Tuesday, September 4 in the 200m heat, scheduled for between 10.50am and 11.03am. The 200m final is on the same day at 8pm, with the medal ceremony at 9pm.
He then races in the 100m heat on Saturday September 8 between 11.03am and 11.16am. This is followed by the final at 7.46pm and the medal ceremony at 8.17pm.