GALLERY: Bronze, silver and gold for Cundy at UCI Para-Cycling Track World Championships
PARALYMPIC star Jody Cundy will return from Los Angeles with a complete set of medals after winning bronze, silver and gold at the UCI Para-Cycling Track World Championships.
The fastest Paralympic cyclist in history picked up his 11th world title on Saturday by cruising to victory in the 1km Time Trial (kilo).
He finished three seconds quicker than his nearest rival in 1:06.001 - less than a second off his own world record.
But the 33-year-old, from Walpole St Andrew, admitted he was still not fully satisfied with the comfortable win.
He said: “I’m a little annoyed to be .001 away from a 1:05 and it’s also the first time ever that I’ve won a world or Paralympic title and not broke the world record at the same time, but I shouldn’t be too disappointed.
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“We might have got my taper slightly wrong or maybe I just didn’t have enough recovery from the flight and the travel, but we can learn from that and that’s the important bit.
“I have to say my legs felt like jelly in the morning, they felt awful. 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.
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“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.”
Cundy began the championships by taking bronze in the 4km Pursuit on Friday after having to race twice in qualification because an official was standing on the track.
The BBC East 2011 Disabled Sports Personality of the Year had won silver in the same event last year, but insisted the result was still a step in the right direction.
“London is my main goal and I am still learning in the pursuit,” he said. “It’s a very different event to the kilo but I am not a million miles off from where I want to be, so everything is pointing in the right direction.”
Cundy had hoped to seal his championships by helping to defend Great Britain’s Team Sprint title alongside Darren Kenny and, new member, Sarah Storey.
But the team were forced to settle for silver in yesterday’s final after an issue with Storey’s handlebar attachment saw them finish behind an impressive Chinese team.
It was the first time since 2007 that Great Britain had not won the Team Sprint title and Cundy admitted they had lost to the better team.
He said: “I think if we had practised more, we could have been better. Maybe we have been a bit complacent with the Team Sprint because we’ve always won it comfortably, but we literally did our trial and no practice.”
Cundy will now enjoy a holiday in Los Angeles with his family before returning to being preparations for his home Paralympic Games.
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 cant complain.
“What has been really amazing is the support myself and the team have been getting from the fans back home.
“I’d like to say thank you to all of 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.”
• PICTURES COURTESY OF CHRISTINA KELKEL.