Kiwi Adam Hall races to gold medal glory

New Zealand Paralympian Adam Hall thrilled his home crowd with a gold medal-winning performance in the Winter Games IPC adaptive slalom at Coronet Peak, near Queenstown, yesterday.

Hall was upbeat about the well-prepared course and the conditions after a decisive win in the 44.90-second first run.

"I had a slight hiccup in the second run, but managed to maintain my composure. It's been a good day all round and great to win at home," he said.

Hall said the Winter Games was a great opportunity to showcase the sport in New Zealand.

"It's always good to be able to show New Zealand what we do on the road. The Winter Games means we can get the best athletes in the world to come down here and compete," he said.

Australian Paralympian Cameron Rahles-Rahbula, who was the silver medallist in the men's slalom standing category, had flagged that Hall would be the man to beat. He clocked the fastest second run of 45.88sec, after making a mistake in the first. However, Hall's combined 1:31.59 time was enough to take the title.

Rahles-Rahbula finished in 1:34.29, while third place went to popular United States Paralympics team member Ralph Green, the first African-American to make the team, who recorded 1:35.87.

The men's slalom sitting category was won by Korea's Jong Seok Park, who claimed the giant slalom title on Tuesday. He completed the course in 1:50.25, but was pressured by war amputee US Paralympian Heath Calhoun, who had the fastest first run in 55.53, but crashed at the top of the course in the second, finishing in 2:00.09.

The bronze medal was won by British Disabled Ski team member Peter Dunning, who lost both legs in a roadside bombing attack in Afghanistan three years ago, with a combined 2:09.10 time.

Australian Melissa Perrine and her guide, Andrew Bor, added to their giant slalom gold medal, winning the women's slalom visually impaired category. She finished in 1:58.63, with Jae Rim Yang and her guide Ko Woon Chung taking silver in 2:48.62.

The event continue today with the ski cross at Cardrona.

The Press