MOST amateur athletes accept that the rewards of their passion is in terms of achievement rather than cold cash but they nonetheless have to finance much of their own activities.
And Ireland’s first woman para powerlifter, Nicola Dore from Kilcornan, is no exception.
In fact, the European bronze medal winner faces even bigger challenges in that she has to fund her expenses to take part in competition in places as far-flung as Dubai and Kazakhstan.
Wheelchair user Nicola, who is always up for a challenge, first became interested in powerlifting when a coach at a basketball tournament told her there were no women para powerlifters.
“I said to him I’ll have to change that,” she told the Limerick Post.
That was in 2015, and Nicola has now qualified for world-class competition in Dubai and the elite World Championships in Kazakhstan, a trip that will cost her up to €5,000 in flights and accommodation.
Nicola trains between three and five days a week, depending on what competition is coming up and she can now lift 70 k – more than her own bodyweight.
Her friends are busy running fundraisers to try to help her meet the costs.
Edwina Gorby Mulqueen said, “She’s Ireland’s top 40th female sport star under the age of 40. She competes in weightlifting competitions in Ireland and in different parts of the world but she currently has no sponsorship at all.
“She pays for her own food and drinks, sports clothing and equipment, flights and accommodation, all by herself along with donations from the public”.
Edwina and friends have organised a gala concert with a range of attractive prizes for Thursday, March 28 at the Woodlands Hotel in Adare.
There will be five bands – ‘Different Sounds’, the Reidy Family, ‘Hot Ice’, ‘The Little Showband’ and ‘Kim’s People’ as well as comedy and craic.
Tickets are €15 and can be bought at the door or in advance from the many local shops that are stocking them.