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News posted on Thursday 28th September, 2023

Nicole Murray named world’s Best Female Summer Para Athlete

Nicole Murray and Greg Warnecke at the PARA SPORT Awards 2023

  • Paralympian Nicole Murray has won ‘Best Female Summer Athlete’ at the 2023 PARA SPORT Awards.
  • The Waikato-based Para cyclist had an incredible 2022 season, winning two world championship titles and becoming the top ranked female C5 Para cyclist in the world.
  • Murray is in Bahrain to collect her award in the 2023 PARA SPORT Award Ceremony.

New Zealand Paralympian #222 Nicole Murray is the 2023 world’s Best Female Summer Para Athlete. The PARA SPORT Award, presented to Murray in a glittering ceremony in Bahrain today, tops an incredible couple of years for the 30-year-old cycling star.

“It is such an honour to be here in Bahrain receiving the Best Female Summer Para Athlete Award. I’m incredibly grateful for all the people who have come along with me on my journey as an athlete – I could not have got to this point in my career alone. Competing on the international stage can be a whirlwind, so I appreciate this chance to pause, reflect on the past season, and celebrate my achievements. How cool to be acknowledged alongside fellow Kiwi Rebecca Foulsham for the amazing work she does as a volunteer. I can’t wait for the next round in the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games!” 

Murray, who lives in Otorohanga in the Waikato, stormed to global success in 2022. She seized two world titles on the Track, as well as three other World Championships medals. Two of those, she earned on the Road.

Murray’s coach Damian Wiseman feels the accolade is well deserved by the hardworking athlete:

“Nicole had an incredible 2022 season. With 5 World Championships medals in 2022, the most of any female C5 athlete, the only C5 woman to win more than one world title (across Road and Track). Simply put, she has proven herself the most consistent and successful C5 female athlete in 2022. It really shows how much her hard work and dedication has elevated her performances within the women’s C5 field. She is now the athlete to beat.”

The results placed Murray 2nd in Road and 1st in Track globally for C5 women. She has since followed this up by blitzing to another World Championship title in 2023.

Paralympics New Zealand CEO Greg Warnecke says this recognition is just one of many reasons that Kiwis should be excited to follow Paralympians and Para athletes as they head towards Paris 2024.

“Nicole is a phenomenally talented athlete, and thoroughly deserving of this global award. From a wider perspective, I am thrilled about the impact this will have. The power of performances like Nicole’s transform lives. They inspire people to get involved in Para sport, whether that’s as a fan, as a volunteer, as a commercial partner, or as a competitor.

“Nicole’s success is indicative of the strength of Para sporting talent in New Zealand. This winter, we’ve seen Kiwi World Champions named in Para athletics, Para swimming and Para cycling. The Paris 2024 Paralympics are going to be an absolutely gripping ride for New Zealand.”

About the PARA SPORT Awards

  • The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) runs the PARA SPORT Awards.
  • The 2023 PARA SPORT Awards take place alongside the IPC General Assembly on 27 September 2023 in Bahrain.
  • They celebrate the terrific achievements of summer and winter sport athletes in one event, along with recognising the work of volunteers, coaches and members of the IPC whose efforts have contributed to strengthening the impact of Para sports worldwide.

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