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Special Olympian excels in Kalispell-area competitions

GAIL ANDERSEN Screen Shot 2022-05-05 at 12.58.22 PM.png
Posted at 4:11 PM, May 06, 2022

KALISPELL - Special Olympian Gail Andersen is an all-around athlete for the Kalispell Krushers Adult team who competed in the Kalispell Regional and Area Competition.

“Just being very happy, very excited I’m here to compete,” said Andersen.

Gail’s coach Craig Faulkner calls her an All American because she competes in snowshoeing, basketball, baseball and tack.

This year at the summer regional competition, she progressed from the 25-meter dash to the 50-meter dash and then the 100-meter dash.

“Which is fun. I enjoy it. I like it. I'm very excited to go kick some butt today,” said Andersen.

Gail has been competing as a Special Olympian for almost ten years now and was supposed to go to the World Winter Games in Russia in 2023 before they got canceled this March.

But her main goal is to have fun, cheer on her team, and compete at her best.

“Go out there have fun. Doesn't matter what metal I get, just whatever I get, I'll be happy with,” said Andersen.

Gails favorite part about being in the Special Olympics is spending time with her team and cheering everyone on.

“You know she is a great teammate as well. Always works hard, willing to run extra, she runs with our other athletes when it’s not even her turn. So again, shows up early stays late. works hard. She's a winner. She deserves to win," said Special Olympics coach Craig Faulkner.

After not being able to compete in the traditional form because of COVID-19, athletes and fans were happy to be back on the field.

“It feels really good just to be able to compete in be out there being active. Enjoying and having fun,” said Andersen.