Schabort, who has just turned 41, said this would be his last time to participate in the Paralympics.
The games will be played September 17-28 and will involve 4,000 athletes from around the world.
Schabort will be competing in the 26.1-mile Marathon race and the 5,000 and 10,000 meter races on the track. The Marathon race will be run over the same route that, according to Greek legend, Philippedes ran in 490 BC to tell the people of Athens about the Greek victory over the Persians at the planes of Marathon. The only difference, according to Schabort, would be the paved roads that are there today. The Marathon race is based on that story in Greek history.
The Cedartown resident won a Bronze Medal at the Paralympics in Barcelona, Spain in 1992, and a Silver Medal at the Sydney, Australia Games in 2000. Both medals were won in the Marathon event. “If I can bring home a gold medal that will give me all three in the same event,” he said.
Schabort said at the Paralympics he will concentrate on the Marathon race, which is his strength.
Schabort has also won the Atlanta Fourth of July Road Race the past two years for wheelchair athletes. The Atlanta race is the most popular 10k race in the world.
The local athlete has helped to establish the Cedartown Peachtree Training Camp for wheelchair athletes that is held each year prior to the Atlanta Fourth of July race. The event has attracted over 40 world-class wheel-chair athletes to Cedartown each year.
Schabort participates in the local races of the training camp and has won or finished strong in each one.
The trip to Athens will include Schabort’s wife, Caron, and their who children, Daniel, age 2; and Simon, age three months.
Schabort is a native of South Africa but moved to Cedartown after participating in the 1996 Paralympics in Atlanta.
Schabort lost both his legs while serving in the military in South Africa. He was injured when a bomb landed near his position.