Gander Special Olympian prepares for World Winter Games in Austria – Newfoundland & Labrador

Floressa Harris, a member of the Gander Wings Special Olympics team, is getting ready for the biggest competition of her life. 

The snowshoer is one of four people from Newfoundland and Labrador representing Team Canada at Special Olympics World Winter Games in Austria in March.

Harris is competing in the 100-metre and 200-metre snowshoe races.  It means a lot of training. 

“Three days a week. Different days I do different workouts. Some days I’ll just do repeats of 60s, or some days I’ll do my ladder, and just other workouts at home, ” said Harris. 

She also gets in as much practice on snowshoes as possible, training all winter at the Airport Nordic Ski Trails in Gander.

Harris has been in Special Olympics since 2009, excelling in national competitions. 

Floressa Harris does her stretches, part of a rigorous training schedule.

Last March, Harris took home gold in the 100-metre race at the Special Olympics Canada 2016 Winter Games in Corner Brook. She won silver in both the 200-metre and 400-metre races as well. 

But the games in Austria is her first time competing internationally.  In fact, it’s her first time travelling outside the country.

“I’m just counting the days down and I can’t wait.”

Harris said she isn’t nervous about the Games, and is looking forward to the experience.

“I’m just going to go and do my best. And if I can bring home a gold I’m going to, but if not, it’s just a chance of getting to go away to other countries.”

The other athletes from Newfoundland and Labrador representing Team Canada are Justin Dodge of Grand Bank, along…

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