Olivia to be Cannock Chase’s Paralympic Ambassador
Published on Monday 16th July 2012
A young blind horserider will be Cannock Chase’s Paralympic Flame Ambassador for the special celebration being held in the District in August.
Fourteen-year-old Olivia Wilson from Cannock has been tipped as a future Paralympian and is firmly set on competing in the 2016 Games in Rio, Brazil.
On Friday 24th August she will travel down to London for the national Paralympic Flame Lighting event as the ambassador for Cannock Chase. She will bring a Paralympic lantern back to the District for the Paralympic Flame Celebration at Chase Leisure Centre in Cannock on Saturday 25th August.
The Cannock Chase High School student took up horse-riding when she was 10 and two years ago won the 'totally visually impaired' section of the RDA (Riding for the Disabled Association) national championships, her very first competition. At the weekend (Saturday 14th July) Olivia was runner-up in the same competition.
Olivia, who has a team of callers positioned around the dressage ring to guide her, said: "I'm really excited to be the Ambassador and I can't wait to go down to London. I couldn't believe I'd been chosen really."
Olivia's mum Sue Wilson said: "Whatever she's wanted to do, Olivia has done it. She's had swimming lessons with her friends, she's done trampolining, dancing and played football. She's amazing and absolutely nothing will hold her back."
As well as all the training and the competitions, Olivia and her mum often go horse riding across Cannock Chase too.
Olivia was nominated by Doug Smith, a regional instructor for the RDA. He said: "There is no doubt in my mind that Olivia has the potential to be a future Paralympian. She is such a determined and pleasant young lady who has great support from her family. She is brave, determined and dedicated yet retains a wonderful disposition. I can't think of anyone who is more deserving of representing Cannock Chase."
Cllr Christine Mitchell, Cannock Chase Council Culture and Sport Leader, said: "We had so many nominations for the Paralympic Flame Ambassador role - thank you to everyone. It really was a tough decision but we're delighted that Olivia will be carrying out this important role for the District. The Paralympic Flame Celebration will be a wonderful celebration of sport and the spirit of the Paralympic movement."
Cannock Chase was chosen earlier this year to host a Flame Celebration to mark the start of the Paralympic Games and the Council appealed for Ambassador nominations in May.
The Paralympic Flame Celebration takes place at Chase Leisure Centre in Cannock on Saturday 25th August. There will be a Party In The Pool event, sports activities and lots more.