8 March 2018

Moore: “Everybody talks about their cloud having a silver lining, mine was platinum”

Ben Moore would have quite happily cryogenically frozen himself to get over the pain of a motorcycle accident 13 years ago.

Instead the Plymouth snowboarder picked himself up, found a new sport and has a platinum-lining to his dark cloud – a place at the Winter Paralympic Games.

Just a few days remain until Moore will take to the start-line in PyeongChang, part of ParalympicsGB’s first snowboarding team to compete at any Games.

Ben Moore at the 2017 World Championships

The journey

But the 31-year-old is keen to look back as well as at what’s to come, reflecting on the journey he has made to get to his South Korean destination.

“Everybody talks about their cloud having a silver lining, but I don’t think mine was silver-lined – instead it was platinum-lined,” he said of the accident that paralysed his arm.

“Because instead I get to snowboard every day and I’m going to get to represent my country, so I’m really happy with the way that everything has gone.

“For about six months I wanted to be cryogenically frozen until it had healed up, I would have quite happily slept those five, six, seven years away.

“People say to dream big and I always thought my head was in the sky, so for it to be a reality is quite literally what dreams are made of.

“I’m going to go out there and enjoy it, enjoy the moment and remember the opportunity that I have. If that manifests itself into a medal, then all the better.

“I don’t think it will ever settle in, I don’t think I’ll be able to absorb it for a long time. I can still look back at things that I know have happened, but they still feel like a dream.”

Ben Moore at Team Launch

First trying snowboarding on holiday with friends, Moore’s trade was more directed towards skateboarding than on-snow action in his formative years.

But after becoming a snowboarding instructor, a combination of fate and destiny intervened as a hitch-hiking adventure saw him bump into the right person at the right time.

Not looking back since, a man who is only in this position because of an unfortunate accident considers himself the luckiest man alive.

“I got picked up hitch-hiking by the coordinator of an event I was at and head coach of the Canada para snowsports team at the time, she told me about an event that was being hosted at the time on the mountain where I was working,” he explained.

“I had no idea it was occurring, but she invited me to take part once she realised my disability, but they had to make sure I was of a respectable enough level.

“Fortunately it snowed that day, so I went and threw myself off every lump and bump that was going, went head over heels but was told I was what they were looking for.

“It’s just been a rollercoaster rider ever since, I’ve had numerous injuries over the years, including bending my foot while in Chile and I only got back on snow in October.

“Some mornings you wake up with a bit of an ache, but so long as I stretch and get myself going, it seems to be going well.”

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