It’s almost over. All the hype and build up to 2012, the Olympics, the Paralympics, and here we are about to head into 2013.
What a year for sport, and amazing to have played a small part in it!
Back in February my season kicked off in sunny Los Angeles, where I was racing at the Para-Cycling World Track Championships.
They turned out to be an interesting championship, in the Team Sprint riding with Darren Kenny and Sarah Storey we suffered our first defeat since 2006, taking silver behind the Chinese, who had found an amazing man 1 that really did make the difference to their team. In the 4km Pursuit, qualifying was interesting, as there was an official standing on the track in the back straight! Cue a restart, and I managed to post the 3rd quickest time. In the Bronze medal final I tried to learn from my pacing issues in qualifying. However after the 1st kilometre I could see my opponent and decided to chase him downrather than doing a full 4km. After 5 3Ž4 laps I’d caught and over taken Roberto Alcaide from Spain to take the Bronze medal.
In the kilo I managed to maintain my unbeaten record to take the 1km title in 1:06.001. Not my best ride, actually the first time I’ve won at the worlds without breaking the WR, but still it was good enough to take my 5th consecutive world title and the coveted rainbow bands. So LA turned out to be a mixed bag of results, but I did get a full set of medals!
After the worlds it was back to training and preparations for the London Paralympics. Another visit to Majorca for another 10day training camp kick started the final cycle off. It ended with me heading to the Tower of London for a bit of modelling and showing off the Adidas kit that all the GB athletes would be racing in at the home games.
In between all the training, with the build-up to the games I ended up doing quite a bit of publicity, the most fun was the 3 part Sainsbury’s short films, and the Paralympic promo video for Channel4. Some of the shots in the films were pretty cool, and due to the way they were filmed, they gave you an insight into track cycling that you just don’t normally see.
With the year flying by, the Olympics came and went, and before you knew it, I was at the holding camp in Newport, putting the final touches to my preparations for London. Things were looking good, as I PB’d in pretty much every session on the holding camp, just one little hiccup was a crash on day 2, but I survived with just a friction burn on my hip and elbow. A massive relief considering I hit the deck at 75kph!
Then it was time to race, with the kilo up first I was ready to go, with all my competitors going before me I was feeling really confident as I stepped on the track, especially as the fastest time was still half a second slower than my Beijing winning time and still some 9/10ths of a second slower than my WR, and I was going faster than ever now. I just needed to race at my best and that was it, unfortunately it all started to go wrong in a big way! I made my start just as I have countless times in training, however something was wrong, the gate held me, the next thing I know I’m wheel spinning and going sideways. Not ideal. So I stuck my hand up, and called for a mishap, pulled off the track and got ready to take to the start again. However that was it, I was unfairly denied a 2nd start, and that was it, a big fat DNF next to me name, and what followed wasn’t my proudest moment, but it will go down in Paralympic history in the same way as John McEnroe’s outburst at Wimbledon in 1981.
I basically threw all the toys out of my pram at anybody who would listen, in denial that I wouldn’t be defending my kilo title, and was removed from the velodrome. Knowing I was out of order I wanted to apologise, and try to put things right, at least to all the kids that had witnessed my foul mouthed tirade. So a little later I came back out to apologise to everyone in the crowd, then to the sponsors and governing bodies and organisers in a press conference and media scrum. Then finally I headed back to the village as I had to compose myself and come back and race the 4km pursuit the following day.
With the crowd behind me I ripped around the velodrome in qualifying to a new British Record, and 3rd best time. In the final I made short work of my opponent and took Bronze with an overtake in 51Ž4 laps. I covered the first 1km quicker than the winning time from the previous day. Considering the disappointment the day before, and the fact I hadn’t focussed on the pursuit as I placed all my eggs in the kilo basket, a bronze medal really did feel like winning gold. Having watched the footage back, it looks like I started the tiniest of fraction too early hence the gate held me when I pulled forward. Unfortunately though, the false start wasn’t called by the commissaires, so I didn’t get the immediate restart the rules state.
London will always be memorable for me for some amazing highs and some equally amazing lows, but I’m glad I can say I was there and I won a medal in front of the best and noisiest crowd anyone can ask for.
My racing year finished with a few more races on the track, a bronze medal in the Team Sprint at nationals, a 2nd place in the flying lap at the Revolution track series, and in my final race of 2012, a win in the 10mile scratch race in the final round of the MRTL Premier Division track league.
2013 will be a really important year for training, as I plan my revenge in Rio. On the way to 2016 I have also set myself the ambitious target of riding for England at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014. So the hard work starts again, and my motivation is sky high.
Thanks to all my family, friends and supporters and all my sponsors!
See you in 2013, and happy cycling.
The first Revolution of the 2012 series got underway in awesome style, with thrills and spectacular spills. This year we see a change to the format with 12 rather than 8 teams and some new sponsors show off their jerseys. Sim and I braced ourselves for a busy evening.
Elite Flying Lap:
Returning to the track were Olympians Jody Cundy, Steven Burke [IG-Sigmasport] and Ed Clancy [Rapha Condor Sharp]. They certainly got an enthusiastic welcome from the crowd and they really raised the roof in the first event [the Flying Lap], Ed took the win by nearly one second (13.009) over Jody Cundy [FACE] who put in a stunning performance (13.908) and Steven in third (14.149). A great first time appearance for the race at a Revolution (if my memory serves me correctly), and a great start to proceedings for Team Rapha.
Women’s Sprint Events:
The other change to this series is that core events will stay the same throughout the season and there’ll be additional guest races that will change each meeting [they don’t count towards the Team series competition]. This round it was the turn of the ladies in a series of women’s sprints and keirin races, specifically Team GB versus the Netherlands. Team GB were represented by Victoria Williamson and Dannielle Khan [cyclist and successful speed skater] and The Netherlands; Yvonne Hijgenaar and Elis Ligtlee. The sprint crown belonged to Vitoria Williamson taking the Sprint and Keirin wins and again as part of the two woman GB sprint team.
DHL Future Stars Girls:
After the 2011 domination of the DHL Girls podium for the past two years we were missing the formidable Emily Kay as she moves onwards and upwards. Our very own Ellie Coster who finished last years series just behind Emily returns in fighting form determined to take the vacant podium position. Heather and I perused the DHL girls riders list before the racing started and she pointed out her tip for new young rider to watch, “Amy Gornall! She’s got the natural tactics, I’ve seen her race before and she’s the whole package. Destined for big things, in the same way Emily intuitively knows when to attack, it’s her first Revolution but she won’t be phased by it”, and sure enough moments later she was running away from the pack in the early stages of the first girls event; the points race. She only came away with one point in the end but she’s clearly not here to make up the numbers, Amy had consistent results throughout the evening, not a bad start for a young rookie! So watch this space. ￼Others to watch this year are Kimberley English, Lucy Harper, Emily Haycox.
Jessica Roberts [Raleigh GAC] had a great points race, she won with 12 points and the nearest anyone came to her were two Emily’s (Capewell and Haycox) each with 5 point. Ellie Coster [howies] took her revenge in the 6 Lap dash but she couldn’t shake Jess Roberts off the podium, Jess took 3rd and Emily Nelson 2nd. In the final girls event Ellie Coster came 2nd in a frantic Scratch race, the winner was her team mate Emily Haycox, which sadly meant Ellie didn’t quite take the series lead. Jessica Roberts kept on fighting and hoovered up the 3rd place points to sneak the championship lead and podium for the opening Revolution, amazing tactics. The top three female riders are each separated by one point, Roberts (76), Coster (75) and Haycox (74).
The drama of the evening was provided by the boys Points Race with a two part crash, caused by riders clipping wheels but throwing other riders off as they tried to avoid calamity further down the field. I tried to tot up the number of riders involved it appeared to be half a dozen in the home straight, then as they exited into the first corner just in front of me a second group came down very heavily. One of the Rapha riders did the most amazing standing tumble with his bike and landed on his feet with bike falling to the floor as he skidded to a standstill on his cleats – quite a manoeuvre. A number of riders were unable to rejoin the race including Charlie Tanfield who was on course for another good result but he picked up a nasty splinter. Charlie is one to watch in the boys competition.
Ned Boulting popped over for an interview [online shortly] between filming for the ITV4 highlights show [airing 31 October 2012 8pm] and to sign copies of his book ‘How I Won The Yellow Jumper‘ [for Cycling Shorts next competition]. So Ned… What is like to be UK’s face of cycling now? “That’s Gary Imlach, not me! You need to ask Gary Imlach what it’s like.” he said with a with his usual cheeky smile.
Elite 1km Madison Time Trial:
In the Madison the clear winners were Rapha’s Ed Clancy & Andy Tennant in a brilliant time of 56.005.
Elite Points Race:
Infighting in the Cycling Shorts ranks surly not? [not really] but Tom Murray said, “During the points race Jody ‘leant’ on my leg, it was captured on the camera under my saddle. Looks like I will be getting married with a Jody Cundy tyre mark down the back of my leg, it was close racing!”. In the end the race was expertly won by Owain Doull of howies with 24 points, Alex Dowsett [Team Sky] who was one lap up on Owain; came in second with 20 points and Ed Clancy in 3rd with 18. Tom made it into 6th place after his tyre tattooing with a total of 17 points. Jody didn’t finish.
Elite Australian Pursuit:
The Australian Pursuit is always a crowd pleaser and you can see heads in the team and media area centre track bobbing up and down like meerkats to watch what is a 360 degree race unfold around them. In the dying moments of the race there were three riders battling it out Andy Tennant, Alex Dowsett and Leif Lampeter [Rudy Project RT], this race is always a favourite of Leif’s and he remained out of trouble and took the win while Tennant and Dowsett battled for 2nd and 3rd respectively.
Elite Elimination Race:
The race was on early for Ed Clancy but sadly it didn’t pay off, but his effort helped create some tired legs in the pack to allow his team mate Andy Tennant to take victory over Joe Kelly. Clancy and Tennant’s experience shone through and popped some more points in the Rapha bank.
Elite Scratch Race:
In the final championship race of the evening Ed came back in style, the peloton were lapped and there was a one two battle on the line for the final sprint. Ed Clancy sealed victory for Rapha with his win. John Dibben [Rouleur] took 2nd and Christian Grasmann of Rudy Project RT came 3rd.
At the end of the evening the DHL Future Stars Team was howies. Jessica Roberts [Raleigh GAC] and Tristan Robbins [howies] now lead the individual DHL competitions.
Olympian Lizzie Armistead took to the Apron during a break in racing but not in the usual lycra look we are used to. She was interviewed by Hugh Porter. After taking second in the Olympic Road Race to Marianne Vos, Lizzie announced that she would be going head to head with the multiple World Champion at the next Revolution. This promises to be a truly epic battle.
More interviews from Revolution 37: Click play button to listen to Sim’s interview with Ned Boulting. Click play button to listen to Sim’s interview with Matt Holmes. Click play button to listen to Sim’s interview with Adam & Simon Yates. Click play button to listen to Sim’s interview with Ellie Coster & Emily Haycox.
Don’t forget you can catch the highlights show on ITV Player
Revolution Series Round 2 is on 1st December at Manchester. To find out more about the series and to grab one of the few remaining tickets left for the rest of the series visit www.cyclingrevolution.com
Elite Points Race
1 DOULL Owain Howies 24 -1 lap
2 DOWSETT Alex Sky Procycling 20
3 CLANCY Ed Rapha Condor Sharp 18 -1
4 DIBBEN John Rouleur 18 -1
5 GRASMANN Christian Rudy Project RT 18 -1
6 MURRAY Tom IG Sigmasport 17 -1
7 SCHEP Peter WD40 15 -1
8 YATES Simon Maxgear Racing 12 -1
9 HOLMES Matt Raleigh GAC 10 -1
10 WOOD Oliver Sportscover 10 -1
11 KELLY Joe FACE Partnership 8 -2 laps
12 TENNANT Andy Rapha Condor Sharp 3 -2
13 LAMPETER Leif Rudy Project RT 1 -2
14 YATES Adam Maxgear Racing 1 -2
15 SLATER Alistair Sportscover 1 -2
16 LOWE Sam Rouleur 0 -2
17 GEOGHEGAN-HART Tao Sky Procycling 0 -2
18 LATHAM Chris WD40 0 -2
19 BURKE Steven IG Sigmasport 0 -2
DNF SCHWARTZMAN Michael NetApp Endura 10 -2
DNF MCEVOY Jonny NetApp Endura 0 -2
DNF HARRISON Sam Howies 0 -2
DNF CUNDY Jody FACE Partnership -10 -3
DNF HAMPTON Russell Raleigh GAC -10 -3
Elite Australian Pursuit
1 LAMPETER Leif Rudy Project RT
2 TENNANT Andy Rapha Condor Sharp
3 DOWSETT Alex Sky Procycling
4 SLATER Alistair Sportscover
5 MURRAY Tom IG Sigmasport
6 CUNDY Jody FACE Partnership
7 SCHEP Peter WD40
8 HAMPTON Russell Raleigh GAC
Elite Elimination Race
1 TENNANT Andy Rapha Condor Sharp
2 KELLY Joe FACE Partnership
3 LOWE Sam Rouleur
4 YATES Simon Maxgear Racing
5 GRASMANN Christian Rudy Project RT
6 SLATER Alistair Sportscover
7 DIBBEN John Rouleur
8 WOOD Oliver Sportscover
9 YATES Adam Maxgear Racing
10 MCEVOY Jonny NetApp Endura
11 GEOGHEGAN-HART Tao Sky Procycling
12 MURRAY Tom IG Sigmasport
13 LATHAM Chris WD40
14 DOWSETT Alex Sky Procycling
15 SCHWARTZMAN Michael NetApp Endura
16 BURKE Steven IG Sigmasport
17 HAMPTON Russell Raleigh GAC
18 DOULL Owain Howies
19 SCHEP Peter WD40
20 LAMPETER Leif Rudy Project RT
21 HOLMES Matt Raleigh GAC
22 CUNDY Jody FACE Partnership
23 CLANCY Ed Rapha Condor Sharp
24 HARRISON Sam Howies
Elite Scratch Race
1 CLANCY Ed Rapha Condor Sharp
2 DIBBEN John Rouleur
3 GRASMANN Christian Rudy Project RT
4 HARRISON Sam Howies
5 YATES Adam Maxgear Racing
6 MCEVOY Jonny NetApp Endura
7 SCHEP Peter WD40
8 DOWSETT Alex Sky Procycling
9 YATES Simon Maxgear Racing
10 TENNANT Andy Rapha Condor Sharp
11 LOWE Sam Rouleur
12 LAMPETER Leif Rudy Project RT
13 MURRAY Tom IG Sigmasport
14 KELLY Joe FACE Partnership
15 LATHAM Chris WD40
16 GEOGHEGAN-HART Tao Sky Procycling
17 HOLMES Matt Raleigh GAC
18 HAMPTON Russell Raleigh GAC
19 WOOD Oliver Sportscover
20 BURKE Steven IG Sigmasport
21 SLATER Alistair Sportscover
22 DOULL Owain Howies
DNF CUNDY Jody FACE Partnership
DNF SCHWARTZMAN Michael NetApp Endura
6 Lap Dash
1 COSTER Ellie Howies 2:03.409
2 NELSON Emily IG Sigmasport
3 ROBERTS Jessica Raleigh GAC
4 ENGLISH Kimberley Rapha Condor Sharp
5 HAYCOX Emily Howies
6 KINRADE Victoria Rouleur
7 HARPER Lucy FACE Partnership
8 O’BRIEN Lauren NetApp Endura
9 CHEESMAN Laura FACE Partnership
10 BLOUNT Hannah Rudy Project RT
11 HAYWARD Beth Rapha Condor Sharp
12 GORNALL Amy Maxgear Racing
13 TAYLOR Bethany Raleigh GAC
14 COLBOURNE Henrietta Sportscover
15 JOHNSTON Naomi Sky Procycling
16 CAPEWELL Emily WD40
17 LEWIS Megan IG Sigmasport
18 ANSELL Jessie WD40
1 HAYCOX Emily Howies
2 COSTER Ellie Howies
3 ROBERTS Jessica Raleigh GAC
4 HARPER Lucy FACE Partnership
5 HAYWARD Beth Rapha Condor Sharp
6 NELSON Emily IG Sigmasport
7 BLOUNT Hannah Rudy Project RT
8 KINRADE Victoria Rouleur
9 CHEESMAN Laura FACE Partnership
10 ENGLISH Kimberley Rapha Condor Sharp
11 TAYLOR Bethany Raleigh GAC
12 COLBOURNE Henrietta Sportscover
13 GORNALL Amy Maxgear Racing
14 ANSELL Jessie WD40
15 O’BRIEN Lauren NetApp Endura
16 CAPEWELL Emily WD40
17 JOHNSTON Naomi Sky Procycling
18 LEWIS Megan IG Sigmasport
DHL Future Stars Boys Scratch Race
1 ROBBINS Tristan Howies
2 CHAPMAN Benjamin IG Sigmasport
3 CULLAIGH Gabriel NetApp Endura
4 TANFIELD Charlie Rouleur
5 EVANS Joe Rudy Project RT
6 NOON Sean NetApp Endura
7 WILTSHIRE Joe Howies
8 SHAW James Sky Procycling
9 STEDMAN Maximilian IG Sigmasport
10 ESCRITT Jack FACE Partnership
11 GLEDHILL Leon Sportscover
12 GIBSON Matt WD40
13 MOODY Levi Sportscover
14 CREW Harry FACE Partnership
15 KELLY Jake Rudy Project RT
16 LEE Ethan Rapha Condor Sharp
17 FIELDING Harrison Raleigh GAC
18 SCAMMELL Thomas Raleigh GAC
19 CLOSE Fabio Maxgear Racing
20 BRAYBROOKE Christian WD40
21 MCGOVERN Sean Rouleur
22 BAILLIE Karl Sky Procycling
23 HOYLE Jack Rapha Condor Sharp
6 Lap Dash
1 GLEDHILL Leon Sportscover 1:45.498
2 MOODY Levi Sportscover
3 EVANS Joe Rudy Project RT
4 TANFIELD Charlie Rouleur
5 CLOSE Fabio Maxgear Racing
6 SHAW James Sky Procycling
7 ROBBINS Tristan Howies
8 KELLY Jake Rudy Project RT
9 STEDMAN Maximilian IG Sigmasport
10 CREW Harry FACE Partnership
11 CHAPMAN Benjamin IG Sigmasport
12 BRAYBROOKE Christian WD40
13 LEE Ethan Rapha Condor Sharp
14 HOYLE Jack Rapha Condor Sharp
15 BAILLIE Karl Sky Procycling
16 GIBSON Matt WD40
17 ESCRITT Jack FACE Partnership
18 FIELDING Harrison Raleigh GAC
19 SCAMMELL Thomas Raleigh GAC
20 NOON Sean NetApp Endura
21 WILTSHIRE Joe Howies
22 CULLAIGH Gabriel NetApp Endura
23 MCGOVERN Sean Rouleur
1 MOODY Levi Sportscover 9 points
2 GIBSON Matt WD40 5
3 FIELDING Harrison Raleigh GAC 5
4 HOYLE Jack Rapha Condor Sharp 5
5 ROBBINS Tristan Howies 4
6 EVANS Joe Rudy Project RT 3
7 GLEDHILL Leon Sportscover 3
8 LEE Ethan Rapha Condor Sharp 3
9 STEDMAN Maximilian IG Sigmasport 2
10 WILTSHIRE Joe Howies 1
11 CLOSE Fabio Maxgear Racing 1
12 SHAW James Sky Procycling 1
13 NOON Sean NetApp Endura
14 BAILLIE Karl Sky Procycling
15 BRAYBROOKE Christian WD40
16 ESCRITT Jack FACE Partnership
17 KELLY Jake Rudy Project RT
18 MCGOVERN Sean Rouleur
19 CREW Harry FACE Partnership
20 SCAMMELL Thomas Raleigh GAC
DNF CHAPMAN Benjamin IG Sigmasport 2
DNF CULLAIGH Gabriel NetApp Endura
DNF TANFIELD Charlie Rouleur
Revolution Sprint Omnium 200m Time Trial
1 WILLIAMSON Victoria Great Britain 11.700
2 KAHN Danielle Great Britain 12.002
3 LIGTLEE Elis Netherlands 12.009
4 HIJGENAAR Yvonne Netherlands 12.072
1 WILLIAMSON Victoria Great Britain 12.074
2 HIJGENAAR Yvonne Netherlands
1 LIGTLEE Elis Netherlands 12.228
2 KAHN Danielle Great Britain
1 WILLIAMSON Victoria Great Britain 12.091
2 LIGTLEE Elis Netherlands
3 HIJGENAAR Yvonne Netherlands 12.407
4 KAHN Danielle Great Britain
1 Great Britain (WILLIAMSON Victoria, KAHN Danielle) 35.703
2 Netherlands (HIJGENAAR Yvonne, LIGTLEE Elis) 36.195
1 WILLIAMSON Victoria Great Britain
2 KAHN Danielle Great Britain
3 HIJGENAAR Yvonne Netherlands
4 LIGTLEE Elis Netherlands
The Welsh brand will be supporting 6 Welsh juniors as well as national and professional riders in four track meets over the winter.
Alex from howies said “We’re proud to be part of a nation responsible for producing current Olympic and World cycling champions and Revolution will be a great place for our Welsh team to race against giants in cycling. This years team kit has also been designed with elements of the Welsh flag for riders to fly in…. Pine. Rubber. Lycra and speed. We can’t wait”.
Mark Colbourne and I have produced a video featuring the Para-cycling team.
As myself, Mark and the rest of the Para-cycling team are unable to attend the Opening Ceremony tonight due to the cycling events starting tomorrow, we wanted to share a little video with you to say “Hello!”
We shot, directed and edited the “Hello!” video as a thank you for the overwhelming support we’ve received from the British public, and it was a fantastic opportunity for the whole team to get together and capture some moments from our time in the holding camp and athletes village.
Making the video was fun; we wanted to get together as a team and show we have personalities outside our day job, but also show some of our preparations in Newport. In doing so we hopefully put a smile on people’s faces…. Enjoy!
31/08/12 – C4/C5 1km Time Trial Final 01/09/12 – C4 4km Pursuit Qualification in the morning and Final in the
afternoon if qualified
(02/09/12 – C1-5 Mixed Team Sprint Qualification in the morning and
Final in the afternoon if qualified. Please note that Jody is currently
Ahead of the opening ceremony this evening, Jody is more excited and focussed than ever at the prospect of achieving his Paralympic dreams. Jody’s first event will be the 1km Time Trial on Friday and he’s eager to jump on the velodrome boards.
“I’m in great form at the moment and I can’t wait to get out there and race in front of a home crowd! The support has been incredible so far and I think London 2012 will provide an opportunity for the public to really appreciate Paralympic sport, as we train just as hard and put just as much effort in as the Olympic team. It’s fantastic to see everyone really getting behind ParalympicsGB, it really means a lot.”
The London 2012 Paralympic opening ceremony will begin this evening at 8:30pm, but the decision to attend is made by both the athletes and their coaches depending upon their racing schedule. “Of course it would be great to attend, but I’ve not been to an opening ceremony since I have joined the cycling team, as it’s also important to prepare correctly for your competition and sometimes that means you miss out on things. That’s something we are used to as athletes.”
Earlier today at a press conference Jody unveiled his 2012 Paralympics prosthetic cycling leg design complete with new graphics. The leg carries the Union Jack Flag design used on the Team GB kit along with Jody’s medal tally down the back of the leg and the names of all the people who have helped him win ten Gold medals at Paralympics and World Championships.
Jody commented, “I am really happy the way it has turned out, I think it looks pretty cool.”
“It’s a whole new leg for London. It’s a refinement of the leg I had in Beijing with new positioning and alignment and refined aerodynamics. I think the leg looks stunning and it is a thank you to everyone who has helped me on my journey to the Games, right from when I started competing up until now.”
Jody, a five times gold medallist and eleven times World Champion who will compete in the 1km time trial, the team sprint and the 4km pursuit, at the Paralympic Games, unveiled the unique, eye-catching design at a special preview ceremony held at the Manchester Velodrome.
Jody was born with a deformed foot, which was amputated when he was just three years old. After a successful swimming career Jody switched in 2006 from swimming to cycling, competing at international events in the C4 disability category. Winning gold in the kilo in his debut at the 2006 world championships, he repeated this feat in 2007 and 2009 also taking the team sprint title at both events.
Representing Great Britain at the 2008 Summer Paralympics in Beijing, Cundy broke the world record on the way to winning the gold in the Kilo with a time of 1 minute 5.466 seconds. Cundy was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire,MBE in the 2009 New Year Honours. He is the fastest solo Paralympian of all time, completing the flying 200m in a time of 10.805 (66.635 km/h).
Jody’s World Champ Banded Leg
Jody’s Silver Wrap Leg – UCI Para-Cycling World Champs
He has been working on the design with top designer Gary Forshaw, who works with Össur, the Icelandic company which produced his new prosthetic leg as well as those for ‘Blade Runner’ Oscar Pistorius, who is also competing in the Paralympics.
Jody explained, “Prior to the 2011 I had feedback from some potential sponsors that although it was obvious I had a prosthetic leg when I was off the bike, once I was on it the black carbon of the leg and the black carbon of the bike blended into each other and I appeared able bodied! So for the 2011 World Championships in Italy I set about giving my leg a makeover.”
“Initially I painted it bright white and incorporated the world stripes around the centre to signify I was world champion. The leg was a big hit but the governing body didn’t approve of the design, as I was racing in a few events in which I wasn’t world champion.”
“So, for the following year I covered the leg in a chrome vinyl wrap and that attracted a lot of attention, with people calling it the Terminator leg! For London I’ve had a brand new leg made by Össur, and I wanted it to really stand out in front of the home crowds at the Paralympics.”
“I love customising my leg. With so many restrictions on kit and other pieces of equipment it’s nice to have a bit of creative freedom and stand out from the crowd. One part of the leg that’s been common and will continue to be is the medal tally, inspired by bomber planes which carried a mark for each successful sortie. My my leg carries a medal for each successful Paralympics or World Championships.”
On the new design for 2012 the names of all those who have supported the five times Paralympics gold medallist are ‘ghosted’ into the design and on the back of the leg is a ‘medal board’ with ten medal images representing his gold medals in previous World Championships and Paralympics.
Designer Gary said: “In the initial meetings we had to discuss the design Jody already had a fairly good idea of what he wanted, so from there it was just a case of getting those ideas on paper and then eventually onto the prosthesis. The aim was to create an eye-catching, iconic design, and to find a way to include all the names without distracting too much from the overall look – and hopefully we’ve managed to achieve that in the end. I think it looks great! “
Richard Hirons, lead prosthetist of Össur, said: “It happens to be a thing of beauty and I’m very satisfied with the result. “We’ve been very pleased at Össur to work with Jody and his coaching and support team on this collaborative project. We know that Jody will do his bestwhen he’s called to the line, as he always does. In prosthetic terms we’ve been granted the opportunity to pay attention to details that often we’re not able to do. But whatever our contribution, it is Jody who has put in the hours and the effort that is the real headline. And for that, he has our support, admiration and best wishes.”
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