Walpole St Andrew rider Cundy, not long out of hospital, claims sensational gold at Newport Para-cycling International

Jody Cundy. Picture: Andy Whitehouse.

Jody Cundy. Picture: Andy Whitehouse. - Credit: Archant

Three months after a week-long stint in hospital fighting a debilitating infection, Jody Cundy sent out a warning shot to his rivals at the weekend.

The Walpole St Andrew para-cyclist stormed to gold in the C4/5 kilo at the Newport Para-cycling International, improving a personal best by more than half a second.

His time, 1.04.48, was more than four seconds quicker than closest challenger Jozef Metelka. It is the fastest in his C4 category at sea level.

The 36 year-old spent a week in hospital, including a night in intensive care, in November with an infection of the epiglottis (a flap behind the tongue), which caused him breathing difficulties and to lose a lot of weight.

Cundy’s illness meant he missed a block of training, leaving him feeling “miles behind” where he needed to be preparation-wise.

To catch up on the weeks of inactivity, instead of tapering-off, he trained hard in the week leading up to the competition.

His stunning performance shows he is right on track for March’s UCI Para-cycling World Championships in Apeldoorn, Netherlands.

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Cundy, after the competition, tweeted: “Cracking Kilo ride this morning, sea level best time by half a second 64.480. Did the rainbow stripes proud today.

“And considering my week in hospital in November really pleased, another six weeks of hard work before worlds in Apeldoorn.”