A big ‘well done’ to my old friend James Brown for winning a silver medal at the Paracycling World Championships last week in L.A.
James is a 48 year old Irish rider, who like myself has a visual impairment and races on a tandem.
James and his tandem pilot achieved their medal in one of the toughest events going, the 4km pursuit. This was one of my old events before I went to the dark side and became a triathlete so I know what it’s like – start hard for the first kilometer, settle in on the second, try to hold your effort on the third as the lactic acid starts to really burn your legs and then give anything you have left over the last qauter of the four and half minute effort….then collapse in heap or throw up!
James finished only half a second down on the Aussie world record holders, so quite a remarkable effort! Especially true when you consider he has only come into the cycling team over the last 6 months, although he’s a good athlete having been a decent runner, swimmer and skier in the past. This should now set him up nicely for a tilt at Paralympic glory in London 2012 where I understand he will also compete in the time trial and road race.
I have only been back in contact with James for a few months after several years, so it’s great to see he’s doing so well and still keeping fit.
Incidentally, it was James who first got me into cycling when I was about 15, and he and his brother Will are responsible for getting me into Triathlon originally back in the 90’s. The Brown brothers clearly have a lot to answer for! More on this another time perhaps…