PARALYMPIC cyclist Jody Cundy picked up a gold, silver and bronze medal at the Para-Cycling Track World Championships in Los Angeles at the weekend.
He once again took gold in the 1kilo time trial, a silver in the team sprint and bronze in the 4km pursuit and has now accumulated 11 world titles.
Although these World Championships have not been Jody’s most successful, he emphasised the fact that the London Paralympic Games are his main focus.
He said: “We have been working incredibly hard, but there is still a lot more work to do for London. I’ve defended my kilo title and picked up a silver and a bronze in the team sprint and pursuit, so I can’t complain.
“What has been really amazing though is the support myself and the team have been getting from the fans back home. I’d like to say thank you, it really does mean a lot to me and I can’t wait to get to London and perform in front of a home crowd.”
Cundy, who originates from Walpole St Andrew, was impressive in defending his 1Kilo Time Trial.
Cundy, the fastest Paralympic cyclist in history, got to start last giving him the advantage to see the times of his competitors. The time to beat then was that of Jiri Bouska (CZE) who had posted a 1:09.025.
With a seemingly manageable task on hand, the 33-year-old was already more than a second up on Bouska’s time after the first lap. He managed to maintain the momentum to increase this lead to a comfortable 3.024 seconds crossing the line in a time of 1:06.001.
Cundy admitted after the race: “I have to say my legs felt like jelly this morning. It’s the first time before a kilo I didn’t really feel ready for it, so it was all about getting the ride out.
“I went flat out out of the gate but after a lap and a half, it already didn’t feel very fast. I tried to give it everything and by the time I got towards the last lap, I just tried to keep it going. And when I came down the back straight I overheard the commentator saying that I was more than two seconds up, so I knew that we should be able to get it.
“It’s the first time that I’ve won a World or Paralympic title and not broken the world record at the same time, but I shouldn’t be too disappointed.”
Cundy was in a new Team Sprint line-up with Darren Kenny and Sarah Storey because of rule changes and although they posted a faster time to reach the finals than the Chinese they lost out to them in the decider and had to settle for silver.
After the race, he said: “We gave it our all, but we lost to the better team. Unfortunately, we had some issues with Sarah’s handlebar attachment, which had a deadly knock on effect.
“I think if we had practiced more, we could have been better. I think we’re in a strong place for London though.”
Cundy got off for a tricky start in the 4km Individual Pursuit after an official was standing on the track in the back straight and forced him to quit his first qualification run. Luckily the UCI recognised this error and allowed Jody a restart, but this also meant that he had no other rider to race against. He still rode a strong race finishing in a time of 4:55.958, which was good enough to place him third and therefore into the bronze medal ride off.
In the final for bronze, Cundy did not waste any time and managed to catch the Spaniard in lap five to win.
Even though Cundy did not manage to improve on his previous World Championships where he won a silver, he feels confident that his result is a step in the right direction: “Ultimately, London is my main goal and I am still learning in the pursuit.
“It’s a very different event to the kilo, but I am not a million miles off from where I want to be.”