Waddon vows to do a Wiggins and get GB off to a flying start

 

Bradley Wiggins launched Britain's summer of sporting success with his historic win in the Tour de France and his influence is still being felt. With the action due to start tomorrow in the Velodrome, the latest to cite the Wiggins effect is Rik Waddon, one of British cycling's golden hopes in the Paralympics.

The 35-year-old Waddon lives in Chorley, Lancashire, near Wiggins, who became the first British winner of the Tour in July before claiming Olympic time-trial gold at Hampton Court. Waddon's Mohican may not catch on like Wiggins' sideburns, but he hopes to emulate, at least in part, his neighbour's success.

"Bradley's one of my heroes, like Chris Boardman was in the 90s," said Waddon. "For him to come away with a Tour de France win and then go straight into the Olympics and get the gold, it's like 'Wow, I'll have a bit of that'. He lives in the next village to me. He's got the gold postbox in Chorley. I see that and just think I've got to go for it."

Wiggins's was the first of eight Olympic golds for Britain's cyclists in London, equalling their Beijing mark. Britain's Paralympic team won 17 cycling gold medals out of 44 events in 2008 and the squad of 19 riders is expected to challenge that tally in London.

"There's nothing to say that we can't do the same," said Waddon, whose wife Natalie is in Britain's Paralympic swimming team. "We've carried out the same processes as the Olympic guys over the last four years, but obviously you can't control what any other nation does."

Waddon, who has cerebral palsy, is set to compete in tomorrow's C1-C3 one-kilometre time trial, which is a factored competition due to a mixture of levels of impairment. Waddon, who won silver behind team-mate Darren Kenny in the event in Beijing, is a C3 rider, so must beat the calculators as well as his rivals to prevail. C1 riders have a greater degree of impairment so their times are factored the most. He said: "There's a lot of work to do there against a factoring system. I could end up winning, I could end up coming ninth."

On Sunday, the final day of track competition, Waddon will also ride in the team sprint with Kenny and Jon-Allan Butterworth, when Britain will be seeking to defend their Paralympic crown having lost the world championship title to China in Los Angeles earlier this year.

Waddon said: "The main event is the team sprint on Sunday. That's what I've been employed to do, that's what we've been working at all year since the guys were overturned by the Chinese in LA at the track worlds in February. We dominated that event for seven years – we want it back in London."

Like the Olympic cycling team, Britain's Paralympians completed final preparations at the Newport Velodrome and the omens are good. Chris Furber, lead coach of British Cycling's para-cycling team, said: "We've had a strong camp. I always mark in my book with a green highlighter if there's a PB [personal best] and there was a lot of green highlighter in there. Hopefully they will all come up well for competition."

Facts in figures

20 Number of sports contested in 11 days of competition.

503 Number of gold medals to be won during the Paralympics.

166 Participating countries. 204 nations took part in the Olympics.

300 Number of athletes competing for Team GB in the Paralympics.

4,200 Athletes set to compete. 10,820 competed during the Olympics.

News
newsAnother week, another dress controversy on the internet
Life and Style
Scientist have developed a test which predicts whether you'll live for another ten years
health
Life and Style
Marie had fake ID, in the name of Johanna Koch, after she evaded capture by the Nazis in wartime Berlin
historyOne woman's secret life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
News
news... and what your reaction to the creatures above says about you
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn