14 March 2019
Cundy secures 11th successive title as Cox revels in World Championship honours
Jody Cundy secured the 16th rainbow jersey of his career as Kadeena Cox and Katie Toft also celebrated a golden opening day at the UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships.
Cundy first stood atop the global podium as a cycling world champion in 2006 and 13 years later he was back once more, again winning gold in the kilo with unmatchable speed.
He wasn’t the only GB victor on the opening day in Apeldoorn, with Cox proving equally unstoppable while Toft put in an impressive performance in the individual pursuit.
The medal rush had started with Dame Sarah Storey winning silver, as did Blaine Hunt, taking their place within several impressive performances on the Dutch track.
Cundy has long been a master of the boards following his switch from swimming, and the four-time Paralympic champion on the bike once again showed all the experience of his 40 years.
Few have come close to his efforts in the C4 kilo and once again he led the way after the pressure of being the last man to ride, stopping the clock in 1:05.422 – more than a second ahead of his closest rival.
That’s my 11th title in a row now, so it’s a good place to be in looking ahead to Tokyo next year.
“The time is still pretty reasonable, but I’ve set my standards higher than that,” said Cundy.
“I’m happy to win a gold medal and a rainbow jersey, even if my face at the end didn’t suggest so!”
That saw Cundy follow in the golden path of Cox – who made history at Rio 2016 by becoming the first British Paralympian to win golds in multiple sports at the same Games since 1984.
This time only cycling dominated her thoughts and so it might, overcoming technical difficulties in the start gate to don the rainbow jersey in the C4 500m TT.
It was all smiles for Kadeena Cox
Her time of 36.176 seconds was in touching distance of her own world record but the 28-year-old is adamant there is plenty more in the locker with less than 18 months to go until the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
“This is what we train for. At a Championship you want that jersey and that’s what I’ve got,” she said.
“I’m relatively happy with my performance. I’m happy to get the win but there was a bit of a technical issue with the gate, so the time wasn’t what I wanted.
“It’s frustrating that I’ve gone so quick with a bad start, but I guess that suggests there’s more to come.”
Power and determination earned Dame Sarah Storey world silver
Storey, meanwhile, is competing in her first Para-cycling Track World Championships since 2016 and will already leave Apeldoorn with another medal in her collection after C5 500m TT silver – GB’s first of the week.
A time of 38.111 seconds was just beaten by home favourite Caroline Groot, while there was also silver for Hunt, bettering the bronze he won last year in the C5 kilo.
Jon Gildea and Finlay Graham both came within touching distance of their own podium honours but there was also a rainbow jersey for Toft, clocking in with 4:43.767 in the C1 individual pursuit.
Friday’s action will see the tandem riders take to the track, with Lora Fachie and Corrine Hall as well as Steve Bate and Adam Duggleby looking to defend their world titles.
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