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Two Disabled Athletes Make BBC Young SPOTY List For 2015

December 1, 2015

Same Difference was slightly disappointed last night, when the shortlist for the BBC’s Sports Personality Of The Year was revealed. For the first time in a few years, there are no disabled athletes shortlisted for the main award.

We planned to write a post today, expressing our disappointment. However, we happened to come across the shortlist for the Young SPOTY- and we’re very glad we did, because it includes not one, but two disabled athletes!

Sophie Hahn – Para-athletics

Age: 18
From: Leicestershire
•2 x gold medals at the IPC World Championships in Doha.

Sophie, who has cerebral palsy, was inspired to take up athletics after watching London 2012. She won her first world title within a year. Aside from excelling as an athlete, Sophie has proved she possesses great sportsmanship, congratulating every athlete after her races, and taking all advice on board, whether it be about sporting improvements or how to deal with the media.


Tully Kearney – Para-swimming

Age: 18
From: Aldridge
4 x gold, 1 x silver and 1 x bronze at the IPC World Swimming Championships in Glasgow
• Competed in seven competitions in 2015
• This year she has improved her 200m Individual Medley time by 10 seconds and lowered three European records in the 400m Freestyle, the 200m IM and the 100m Butterfly during the World Championships

Five years ago, Tully was merely a spectator watching her mum, Amanda, swimming for fun. Tully has a progressive neurological condition that causes muscle weakness, and was reclassified earlier this year. Tully’s first appearance on the international stage was in 2013, where she won one gold, three silver and three bronze medals in her age group at the 25th German Open Meet in Berlin.

Same Difference would be very pleased to see one of them following in the footsteps of Ellie Simmonds, Josef Craig,and a certain Andy Murray (yes, he is disabled…).

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