Horobin setting her sights on Rio

The Girrawheen para-athlete has kicked her training up a notch and is competing in various events with the hope of qualifying for discus at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro.

In the lead-up to the national championships in Queensland at the end of the month, Horobin � a below knee amputee � is training six days a week.

This consists of technique development in discus and shot put throws with her coach, Alanna Wignall, and strength and conditioning training with her personal trainer.

�I�m also having specialist Talent ID Squad (an Athletics WA high performance program) training days in various skills required by elite athletes like nutrition, physiotherapy and sport psychology,� the 35-year-old said.

Horobin recently competed in the Queensland Track Classic in order to be internationally classified with a medical review of her disability and measure of her performance.

She threw 22m in discus and 6.36m in shot put.

Based on the 2014 listings, these results would place her 10th and seventh in the world for her F44 class.

�I am training furiously on and off the field to qualify to represent Australia at the 2015 IPC (International Paralympic Committee) World Championships in Qatar in October,� she said. �Qualification requires me to throw a minimum B qualifier distance of 24.85m but this does not guarantee my selection. An A qualifier distance is 28m.

�My current competition PB is 22.97m, just 1.88m short. This seems far but at nationals one year ago, I threw 17m so already this year, I have improved more than the difference.�

If she qualifies for the world championships, Horobin said it would be likely she would compete against �like-affected athletes�, which would be new to her.

�There may also be a qualification and then a separate final for the throwing, which I have not experienced before,� she added.

�If I medal and throw a world championships distance, that will allow me to move up into the Target Talent Program with WA Athletics.

�This squad is aimed squarely at Rio level performance where I will get access to further programs and support in my training and have a further year to build my performance in time to qualify for Rio by August 2016.�

However, all of these goals require Horobin to have a more suitable prosthetic leg to help her throw.

�The quote for a leg capable of throwing at an elite level is $13,000,� she said.

�Current State funding models provide prosthesis capable of supporting basic functional living. The specifications of the prosthesis supplied is only for walking.

�In order to train and improve in my throwing, I need the ability to run, to move nimbly and to trust that my prosthesis is not going to fail.�

Horobin is trying to raise money to help her get the new prosthesis.

With help from the Rotary Club of Balcatta, she will hold a quiz night at the Scarborough Sportsmen�s Club at 7pm on May 9.

Tickets are $15 per person and tables are of eight.

Payment can be made to Rotary Club of Balcatta (Inc.), BSB: 086122, Account: 647234211

Include your name as a reference and email your details to confirm payment to leggingittorio@gmail.com.

To donate, go to www.gofundme.com/NatalieHorobin.