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First Aussie Female Winter Paralympian hopeful

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I thought all you Aussies out there would appreciate this news item:

Jensen close to Games history

A CHEMICAL engineer is on the verge of becoming Australia's first female skier on a Winter Paralympic team.

Geelong's Emily Jansen, a leg amputee, claimed bronze in the slalom at this week's Austrian national titles, which ended on Tuesday.

Although it was her first podium finish during the 2005-06 season, Jansen has accumulated the number of points necessary to win her spot on the team for the Turin Games, which start in 14 days.

The alpine events will be held at Sestriere Colle, using the same runs as the Olympics but with some slight modifications.

Jansen, 28, is just awaiting ratification from the Australian Paralympic Committee selection committee.

The process engineer at Melbourne Water's Werribee treatment plant will become the 10th member of the 2006 Paralympic winter team, but the first woman.

She is a relative newcomer to the sport having been diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer in her second year of a science degree in 1997. She lost her right leg below the knee and originally took up wheelchair basketball.

After just missing out on the 2004 Summer Paralympics Games team for Athens, Jansen was on a regular ski holiday at Mt Buller with her family, when she was spotted by the APC and asked to join a talent identification camp.

Six months later, she competed at the US national titles in Colorado for Australia.

Australia has been to every Winter Paralympics since they began in Sweden in 1976, but previously has had only male alpine skiers.

Taken from this webpage.

Lizzie :)

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