First medals to be given in alpine skiing and biathlon at Winter Paralympics26 Feb 2018
Five-time Paralympic champion Anna Schaffelhuber leads Germany's delegation at PyeongChang 2018
As the Olympic Winter Games came to an end in PyeongChang, South Korea, on 25 February, the world’s attention now turned to the Paralympic Winter Games, set to take place between 9 and 18 March.
The PyeongChang Olympic Stadium will stage the Opening Ceremony on 9 March.
Day 1 of competition will be on 10 March, with the Games’ first medals being decided at the Jeongseon Alpine Centre as the downhill events take place across all men’s and women’s categories.
Slovakia’s Henrieta Farkasova aims to win her sixth Paralympic gold in the women’s vision impaired and Germany’s Anna Schaffelhuber repeat her five gold medal performances from Sochi 2014 in the women’s sitting.
France’s Marie Bochet is fresh from winning the Crystal Globe in the women’s standing after finishing first in the overall World Cup standings, and hoping to extend her winning streak at the Winter Paralympics.
In the men’s side, Austrian Markus Salcher seeks to defend his downhill title in the standing category. Others to look out for are Canada’s Mac Marcoux in the vision impaired and USA’s Andrew Kurka in the sitting event.
Twenty-four medals will be up for grabs in the first day of biathlon at the Alpensia Biathlon Centre as the sprint events are contested across all men’s and women’s categories.
NPA athletes dominated the season’s World Cup, finishing top of the standings in each of the categories, and will start as leading contenders for gold in PyeongChang.
But USA’s Oksana Masters in the women’s sitting, Ukraine’s Oleksandra Kononova in the women’s standing, France’s Benjamin Daviet in the men’s standing and South Korea’s Eui Hyun Sin in the men’s sitting will be tough to beat and feel ready to cause more than one upset.
Para ice hockey
The Para ice hockey competition will open on 10 March with Norway vs. Italy. It will be followed by South Korea vs. Japan and reigning world champion Canada vs. Sweden.
Also on the first day of competition, the Gangneung Curling Centre will host eight games: Norway vs. Great Britain, Switzerland vs. Canada, USA vs. South Korea, Germany vs. NPA, Sweden vs. China, South Korea vs. NPA, Slovakia vs. Finland and Canada vs. Norway.