CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — “Going down there and hopefully get my team gold,” Todd Peddycoart, Special Olympic Bowler, said.

That’s the goal for one athlete that could soon become a reality. One Monticello man will be traveling to Florida to represent Central Illinois. He is competing in the Special Olympics next year.

Todd Peddycoart will be representing Illinois in the Special Olympics and he even showed a few tricks on how he plans to bring home the gold.

“I’ve been bowling technically since I was like 6th grade and I’ve been practicing and practicing and getting better and bowling on leagues,” Peddycoart said.

Peddycoart is heading to the Special Olympics next year. He’s on the Golden Eagle Special Olympic Bowling Team.

“Just competing against other bowlers that are actually better than me because bowling against better bowlers just gets me better and I hope to get at the top one day,” Peddycoart said.

He is at the top. Out of 40,000 Special Olympic athletes in Illinois, Peddycoart is one of nearly 70 athletes selected to represent Illinois in the 2022 Special Olympic games in Orlando, Florida and he’s definitely excited and honored to go.

“Its a big ole accomplishment for me,” Peddycoart said. “I’m very, very excited. Its my very first time ever going to nationals.”

Peddycoart will be one of four members on the soil bowling team and he’s ready to bring home the gold.

“Very excited to get to know my fellow team members and my coach and just other competition,” Peddycoart said.

He says he’s hopeful his family will be able to watch him compete because he says they are the reason he picked up a bowling ball in the first place.

“The reason why I’m into bowling is because it runs in my family and I just kind of picked it up from my grandpa,” Peddycoart said.

“Bowling is just one of my favorite sports that I’ve always loved to do in my whole life,” Peddycoart said.

Peddycoart is known at several bowling alleys throughout the area and he said he wants to thank his coaches and mentors for helping him reach this accomplishment. The Special Olympics will take place in June.

There are 18 sports in the Special Olympics next year. It was founded back in 1968 and has been hosted internationally as well. It’s taken place here in the U.S. but also Abu Dhabi, Austria, South Korea, and Greece.



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