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Tuesday
May012018

Paralympic Games hopeful Gabrielle Platt discusses how support from one organization is helping her chase her athletic dream

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Gabrielle Platt has starred in para-cycling and wheelchair basketball and is now training to face the top players in the world.

Platt is a Paralympic Games hopeful, looking to earn a spot on Team USA after she races in the Paracycling National Championship this year. She recently spoke with ABC News about her journey to nationals and her hopes to compete at the highest level.

Platt raced in the USA Cycling Para-Cycling Road National Championships last year in Grand Junction, Colorado, but "didn't come out with quite the success I wanted." So, this year, she will try again, hoping to use nationals as a starting point to pursue her Paralympic dream.

"My main goal is to eventually become a team member of Team USA in hand cycling and wheelchair basketball. That's the ultimate goal," Platt says, as she readies herself for another test at nationals.

A mother from Oklahoma who got involved in adaptive sports over the past several years, Platt attributes much of her success in para-cycling and wheelchair basketball to the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF), which helps give athletes with physical challenges access to sports.

"They have provided me with so much," Platt tells ABC News, continuing, "They provided me with a wheelchair to play basketball. They've provided me with money for travel expenses. And without them I couldn't have participated in anything."

She added, "I wouldn't have the opportunity to go to competitions and compete. I wouldn't have the equipment that I need to perform on my highest level. I definitely attribute my success to the Foundation."

CAF offers grants to athletes, helping to provide them with expensive athletic equipment. It has supported a number of Team USA athletes.

As for Platt, she hopes she too will be a Team US member while continuing to be a part of the Challenged Athletes Foundation.

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