Chris Leaves Kerry On Handcycling Challenge Around Ireland

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Chris Slavin hand cycling with Cian Horgan on the Listowel-Tarbert leg of her Project Possible challenge. Photo by Poshey Aherne

AN American para-athlete is travelling around Ireland on her hand cycle and began her epic journey from Killarney on Saturday.

Chris Slavin is raising funds for The Ian O’Connell Trust and to raise awareness about spinal injuries. Her ‘Project Possible’ challenge is expected to take about three weeks and she hopes to be back in Killarney by September 28.

Yesterday she was joined on the Listowel-Tarbert leg of the journey by 15 year old Cian Horgan from Listowel. Cian, a member of Kingdom Wheelblasters Basketball Club, was using a bike he’s had since he was eleven.

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It only has 7 gears, while Chris’ has 28 but Cian lasted 20km. On the ‘Project Possible’ facebook page, Chris said; “I am in an aerodynamic, athletic position, while Cian is fighting the resistance of the wind. Despite these things, Cian kept up, worked hard, and cycled 20 km; the furthest he has ever gone…by far. He will be sore tomorrow, but he left beaming, and saying that next year he wants to cycle in The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle, as I did this year.”

Chris was also helped by Tralee man, Colin ‘Poshey’ Aherne, who drove her support vehicle. She needs volunteers to drive the support vehicle at various legs of her challenge.

Chris Slavin is a a former competitive snowboarder, but suffered a serious spinal injury during a US ski-board competition in 2007 which resulted in the loss of use of both her legs.

An avid visitor to Ireland, she returned to these shores in 2017 and took part in the Ring of Kerry Cycle during the summer and she got to know Ian O’Connell. She devised the ‘Project Possible’ challenge and set up a gofundme page where she explains why she’s undertaking the journey. You can also check out her facebook page by clicking here.

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