By Gary Anderson

February 20 - The BPA will give nine participants access to behind the scenes at Sochi 2014 as British athletes prepare for competition ©Getty Images The UPS Foundation is to fund a second Inspiration Programme run by the British Paralympic Association (BPA) at Sochi 2014, following the success of a similar initiative at London 2012.

This year's programme will provide nine talented future Paralympians and staff with the opportunity to experience the Games before they attend as a competitor or staff member.

The next generation of Paralympic athletes will gain an understanding of the scale and intensity of the Games before they reach the starting line, according to the BPA.

"We know that the Paralympic Inspiration Programme is a valuable tool for us in supporting athletes and sports to develop into Paralympians," said Chef de Mission for ParalympicsGB Penny Briscoe.

"The UPS Foundation recognises the importance of supporting developing athletes and we could not have run this programme in Sochi without their assistance."

The nine participants on the programme will have the opportunity to gain a unique insight into the multi-sport environment at Games-time, by observing Paralympic competition and visiting the Paralympic Village.

Mick Brennan (back row,far right) and the rest of the Alpine skiing team will be hoping to impress those taking part on the Paralympic Inspiration Programme in Sochi ©Getty Images Mick Brennan (back row, far right) and the rest of the Alpine skiing team will be hoping to impress those taking part on the Paralympic Inspiration Programme in Sochi ©Getty Images

Alpine skier Mick Brennan will be one of those competitors being observed as he makes his Winter Paralympic Games debut.

Brennan was one of a number of promising young athletes selected to take part on a preliminary programme at Vancouver 2010, which he says inspired him even more to secure his place on the ParalympicsGB squad for Sochi.

"During the programme I was able to experience other sports and see how they run their disciplines," said Brennan.

"I came away from the Games not only knowing what to expect four years later but hungrier and more passionate about earning my seat on the plane to Russia.

"In the years that followed, I needed only to remember how I felt during that period to reignite my motivation when times were hard."

Those participating on the Paralympic Inspiration Programme in Sochi are Benjamin Millard, Chris Lloyd, Hugh Nibloe, Debbie McKenna, Bryan Hackworth, Tyler Christopher, Rachel Easton, Scott Forrest and Stewart Wright.

"We are delighted to support the BPA's Paralympic Inspiration Programme," said region strategy manager for UPS, Alan Williams.

"Through their Paralympic Inspiration Programme, the BPA provides an invaluable opportunity for athletes to understand what it takes to be a Paralympian.

"The initiative is essential to providing athletes with the motivation to make the vital next step to Paralympic selection."

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