Bunbury Paralympian Pollard continues to defy the odds

Headshot of Mitchell Woodcock
Mitchell WoodcockSouth Western Times
Bunbury paralympian Sean Pollard claimed a bronze medal in the 2018-19 Para Snowboard Cross World Cup.
Camera IconBunbury paralympian Sean Pollard claimed a bronze medal in the 2018-19 Para Snowboard Cross World Cup. Credit: Sean Pollard/Facebook

If there is one thing you can never question in Sean Pollard, it is his resilience.

The para-snowboarder dislocated his shoulder and cracked his ribs in a big fall in the final round of the 2018-19 Para Snowboard Cross World Cup in Klovsjo, Sweden on Monday, April 8, but still had a smile as he received a bronze medal for his effort.

Pollard, 28, is known across the country for turning a horrible shark attack in October 2014, where he lost his left arm and right hand, into a positive, competing in the 2018 Winter Paralympics where he finished eighth in the snowboard cross and fifth in the banked slalom, just three years after taking up the sport.

The Bunbury-raised athlete finished third overall in the world cup from 15, which a first in Dubai last year, as well as three seconds and six third placings.

Pollard said to place so well in his first full season was a proud moment.

“I put in a big two years before and didn’t get the results, so I was happy to get the recognition for the hard work I put in,” he said.

“I was just glad that even with the crash, I had enough points to hold onto third.

“It is good for everyone who supports me as well, because it is not easy being away from home. But to get the good result makes it work it.”

Pollard will now spend some time recovering at his home in South Bunbury to heal his body, with one eye on the next round of competition later this year.

“I will probably be heading over to the Victorian snow fields to get some training,” he said.

“I think I will just take it easy for the next two months and then do a little bit of work around home.”

The down to earth snowboarder still has hopes of once again competing at the Paralympics, as long as he can keep the balance of being away and his home life in order.

Pollard also hopes to continue to develop his careers in tourism and public speaking, as well as supporting the efforts to get a bigger skatepark in Bunbury for the locals and to boost the region’s economy by attracting competitions.

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