Pressure is on Jody Cundy ahead of his fifth Games
PARALYMPIC veteran Jody Cundy admits he will have to guard against complacency as he prepares for his fifth Games, and second since he swapped swimming for para-cycling.
Cundy has won Paralympic gold in both sports for Great Britain, his most recent being in the team sprint and one-kilometre time-trial in Beijing, four years ago.
The 33-year-old’s record in the time trial, in particular, is almost perfect – he retained his world title two months ago and will start as one of the favourites to defend his Paralympic crown this summer.
However, Cundy faces the pressure of competing in front of an expectant home crowd and a changed kilo system which will see him face riders from a different classification as well as his own.
“On past performances you would certainly say that. I have a pretty good history - in every Kilo I have done at world level since I entered the sport, it has been a gold medal, so that is a good place to be,” said Cundy, who was born with a deformed right foot which was amputated when he was three years old.
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“But this year for the Paralympic Games it is a combined event - C4 (Cundy’s classification) and C5 - so I not only have to beat the guys I usually race, I also have to beat a class above us.
“I’ve never raced some of those guys before for medals, so it will be an interesting week.
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“You do get to the point where it almost becomes too easy for you to forget how hard it is and the effort that goes into it - you almost become complacent, thinking that pretty much every time you get on the bike you will win.
“But I’ve got to the point now where I think ‘this is London’ and that I need to make sure everything is right for me.”