Bonus tracks from Paralympic cycling stars

The para-cycling track World Championships get under way in Los Angeles on Thursday and more of the interviews the team gave me at their media day in Newport will be online this week as the 14-strong squad look to improve on the nine gold medals they won last year.

The interview with John-Allan Butterworth is running on both the Channel 4 Paralympics website and the British Cycling site. Olympic champion Ed Clancy tweeted after reading it: “I’ll never moan about a hard day training again!”

I’ve edited some of the audio recording from the interview too:

Butterworth lost his left arm in an attack on Basra Air Station (Photo: British Cycling)

Obviously, Butterworth’s is a frightening story but I found this interview intriguing more because of his matter-of-fact approach and attention to detail – two factors that his coach Chris Furber believes are a major factor in his success.

Furber said: “He’s highly analytical and that fits brilliantly with track cycling because it’s a highly analytical sport. It’s about numbers and drag and laps and splits and times. He thrives in that environment where I’m giving him constant factual number feedback.

“He’s also a little  bit of a dreamer who believes in himself and I think you need that as well because you need to be able to look at world bests and think: I can make that, I can beat that.

“He’s very hard on himself and sometimes needs a bit of pepping up but is a really good guy to have on the squad.”

My feature on the “wild world of tandem racing” is also on the Channel 4 site as is an interview with Jody Cundy on how he stays motivated despite having won so many world and Paralympic titles.

The official website for the 2012 Worlds has live video coverage each day, a schedule and a page for results. The British Cycling Twitter feed reports the latest news from LA and you can catch up with the latest by searching on Twitter for #ParaTrackWorlds.

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