09.08.2012 | Tirol Werbung
When the Tirol Cycle Team embarked on their 8-day, 1300km journey from Innsbruck to London 2012, they had no idea how much money they would raise. On Tuesday 31st July, their efforts were realised as a cheque for £15, 634 was presented to Fiona Young, CEO of Disability Snowsport UK, at the Austria House Tirol.
A delighted Fiona Young said, “We came here not knowing how much money the Tirol Cycle Team had raised and this has exceeded our expectations. It means so much to the charity to have such strong backing from Tirol and top sport personalities, who have really embraced what we are trying to achieve. DSUK provide access to snowsports from grassroots right up to the elite and Paralympic team and is superb to gain recognition in what we do.”
The money raised will go towards training more adaptive ski instructors, equipment, increase the number of overseas trips and expand ski schools in indoor snow centres. In the UK there are about a million non-disabled people, who ski overseas each year. If disabled people were keeping up with their non-disabled peers, their number would be about 150,000. In reality it is just a few thousand.
Since 1997 the Tirol Tourist Board has worked hard to provide relevant and comprehensive advice on resorts for travellers with a disability. The dedicated website ‘Without Barriers’ only features information that has been quality checked by a panel of mobility-impaired outdoor experts. The site lists suitable accommodation, ski areas, activities including hiking and hand-bike routes in summer or adaptive cross-country ski trails in winter. Since 2008 Oliver Anthofer, who was paralysed in 1987, has advised the Tirol Tourist Board and worked together to improve the range of accessible cross-country trails in Tirol. With a total of eight World Paralympic titles to his name he understands what is required and is the perfect candidate to test the accessible trails. For more information visit www.withoutbarriers.tyrol.com.
The Olympiaregion Seefeld is one of the leading resorts for adaptive cross-country skiing, with over 41.5km of quality checked routes with qualified instructors. In the Kaunertal there is a wide range of cross-country trails from easy practice trails to moderately difficult routes, with the 4* Sporthotel Weisseespitze offering wheelchair accessible accommodation and sit-ski rental. The best area’s for mono-skiing is Mayrhofen’s Ahorn mountain, Alpbach’s Pögelbahn area and the Wildschönau, who hosted the Alpine Ski World Championship for Physically Disabled and Visually Impaired Sportsmen in 2004.
Bettina Mössenböck runs specialised training for Tirolean ski instructors in disabled skiing. Austria is one of the only countries to have a nationally recognised qualification, with 24 ski schools in the region offering specially trained snowsport instructors. Her aim is that every ski school in Austria will have an instructor trained in disabled skiing.
In summer there are 24 approved wheelchair hiking routes, with almost no differences in elevation, including a route along the shores of the Ötztaler Ache or across the scenic marshlands of the Längenfeld basin. Since 2010, with the help of the RollRinn stretchers it is even possible to reach the summit of a mountain. The stretchers are similar to the ones used by the mountain rescue teams, equipped with a wheel and a seat. Almost 20 hand-bike routes have been tested and checked by hand-bike users and information about the routes, elevation gains, distances for all levels of ability can be found on the Without Barriers website.
Video about the Tirol Charity Cycle ride for DSUK - http://bit.ly/N78P1p
Video showing cheque presentation to DSUK - http://bit.ly/QqCCXF
Donations can still be made at
and for more information on Disability Snowsport UK (DSUK) visit
For further information and images contact:
Becky Horton, Horton PR
020 8330 2143
Head of Marketing & PR
Tirol Werbung – Tirol Tourist Board, Austria