A total of 15 Special Olympics BC athletes, seven coaches, and one mission staff member have earned spots on Team Canada for the 2017 Special Olympics World Winter Games in Austria.
Among the athletes is longtime Special Olympics athlete and ambassador Matthew Williams, who will compete in speed skating.
The B.C. athletes earned their places through their performances at the 2016 Special Olympics Canada Winter Games in Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador.
The team members from SOBC join the Special Olympics Team Canada roster of 110 athletes, 35 coaches and mission staff, two team managers, and one Chef de Mission, and will compete in Austria from March 14 to 25, 2017.
Williams is one of two athletes from B.C. who will compete for Canada in speed skating and has been involved with Special Olympics for the past 11 years.
The 2016 Special Olympics Canada Winter Games were his fourth national Games after previous appearances in athletics, basketball, and speed skating.
He competed in basketball in the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games and is a member of the Special Olympics International Board of Directors.
2016 National Games results:
• 1500m: gold, M2 division – time 03:39.117
• 777m: silver, M1 division – 01:28.621
• 1000m: silver, M1 division – time 01:56.758
• 500m: bronze, M1 division – time 00:55.764