10 January 2020

Cundy itching to step up Paralympics preparations at Track World Championships

With this summer’s Paralympic Games now firmly on the horizon, 16-time world champion Jody Cundy is determined to use the upcoming UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships as a stepping stone towards success in Tokyo.

The 41-year-old - who secured his most recent global title in the men’s C4 kilo at Apeldoorn last year - features among a 23-strong squad who will compete at the event in Milton, Canada, from January 30 to February 2, with GB looking to build on the 20 medals they took home last time out.

And as he steps up his bid for a sixth para-cycling Paralympic medal - and ultimately a fifth gold - Cundy admits he can’t wait to test himself against the world’s best at what is the final major international track competition before the Games.

“Even for those of us who have experienced previous Paralympic Games, this part of the cycle is hugely exciting,” said Cundy, who also won five Paralympic medals in the swimming pool.

“These World Championships represent the last real opportunity to test yourself in a competitive environment before the Games, so it’s a crucial milestone as everyone’s preparations for Tokyo intensify.”

Former track and field athlete Sam Ruddock will contest a cycling World Championships for the first time in Canada

Also featuring in the Great Britain team are reigning world champions James Ball - who will be piloted by Lewis Stewart in light of Pete Mitchell’s injury - Dame Sarah Storey, Kadeena Cox, Neil Fachie and Matt Rotherham, and Sophie Thornhill and Helen Scott.

Thornhill - who will be looking to build on the two gold medals she won alongside Scott in the Netherlands in 2019 - is keen to test her credentials as she steps up her comeback from injury.

She added: “Having undergone hip surgery after last year’s worlds, these championships were always foremost in our minds in terms of a yardstick on the road to Tokyo.

“Helen and I have been pleased with our progression and our times since I returned but testing ourselves on the global stage against our likely opponents for medals at the Paralympics will be a big opportunity and a challenge, and it’s one we’re looking forward to.”

Elsewhere in the 23, Sam Ruddock - who competed in track and field events at both London 2012 and Rio 2016 - will make his first appearance on the Track World Championship stage.

The full squad to represent Great Britain at the 2020 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships:

Kadeena Cox (WC4)

Dame Sarah Storey (WC5)

Crystal Lane-Wright (WC5)

Sophie Thornhill and Helen Scott (WB)

Lora Fachie and Corrine Hall (WB)

Sam Ruddock (MC1)

Louis Rolfe (MC2)

Matthew Robertson (MC2)

Jaco van Gass (MC3)

Fin Graham (MC3)

Jody Cundy (MC4)

Jon-Allan Butterworth (MC5)

Will Bjergfelt (MC5)

Jon Gildea (MC5)

Blaine Hunt (MC5)

Neil Fachie and Matt Rotherham (MB)

James Ball and Lewis Stewart (MB)

Steve Bate and Adam Duggleby (MB)

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