Dame Sarah Storey becomes Britain's Most Successful Female Paralympain - Total Women's Cycling

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Dame Sarah Storey becomes Britain’s Most Successful Female Paralympain

British Paralympians got off to a flying start in Rio last night

Image: @BritishCycling

Team GB continued to dominate on the velodrome in Rio last night as the first of the Paralympic events kicked kicked off.

Megan Giglia and Dame Sarah Storey claimed Gold whilst Crystal Lane took silver. Most notably, Storey’s additional Gold means she overtakes Tanni Grey-Thompson and to earn her twelfth Gold medal and become the Nation’s most decorate female paralympian.

Storey broke her own World Record in the Qualification round for the C5 3km Individual Pursuit – with a time of 3:31.394, whilst Lane managed 3:48.802. The two GB riders took the top spots, so were racing each other for Gold in the final when Storey caught Lane within the first half of the race.

Storey commented after the win: “It’s a bit surreal. The first person I was speaking to after the race was Tanni and it’s so nice to see her here. She’ll always be on a pedestal for me, a lady who has really supported me for all my career.

“(As a girl) I dreamed of pulling on a tracksuit and being able to compete for my country and doing the very best I could and over the course of the last 24 years since that first Games, that lead to these medals. It’s just so surreal.

“I didn’t expect to break the world record this morning, this coming week is really really hard. I just keep improving and I can’t really believe it.”

Lane only learnt she would be riding the Paralympic games ten days before the race – so was absolutely thrilled with her silver medal, commenting: “Two weeks ago I imagined I’d just be watching Sarah win a gold medal in the final, not competing against her. To be part of her history, makes it really special. I had a dream and I never let it go.”

Watch the pair battle it out here… 

Megan Giglia is a double World Champion, but was making her Paralympic debut in Rio – riding the C1-3 Individual Pursuit. In Qualifying, she set a time of 4:03.544, and rode against the USA’s Jamie Whitmore in the final.

Giglia caught Whitmore just after the half way mark – taking her first Gold of perhaps a long career ahead.

Image: @BritishCycling

She commented: “To be fair, it hasn’t sunk in yet. All I know is I couldn’t be here without my team-mates, the back-up crew behind me, my coach and all my family. I just didn’t think I’d make it to Rio, I thought it was ambitious of me but I’d give it a go. The British camp is estatic, we’re hyped up, ready to go. I’ve got my main event out of the way so now I can enjoy the rest of it!”

Watch her race here… 

On Friday, the Rio Paralympic Athletes picked up even more medals, with Sophie Thornhill and Helen Scott taking Gold, alongside a Paralympic record, in the tandem kilo time trial.

Stoker Thornhill and pilot Scott completed the 1000metres in 1:06.283.

Image: @BritishCycling

Thornhill is a four time World Champ, but it was her first Paralympic Games. She said following the ride: “I can’t believe it, months and months of hard work! The crowd are amazing, my family and boyfriend are here. We can’t thank [our family and friends] enough.”

Scott, who competed at London 2012, said: “It’s absolutely amazing… I can’t believe it, me and Sophie have worked so hard for this.”

Not sure what’s still to come? Check out the Rio Paralympic schedule here. 


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