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Waddon well on track for clean sweep
1:18pm Thursday 30th August 2012 in London Olympics 2012 - Latest News
RIK Waddon has one gold medal missing from his collection but to succeed it could be a case of ‘if you can’t beat him, then join him!’
The 35-year-old track cyclist gets his Paralympic campaign under way at 2pm today in the men’s individual C1-2-3 1km time trial.
He has won gold in all of the major championships and another at the Paralympics would complete a memorable clean sweep.
But there is the small matter of GB team-mate and track ‘superstar’ Darren Kenny standing in his way.
Waddon had to settle for silver in Beijing four years ago as Kenny stormed to victory in the 1km time trial – one of four gold medals he picked up.
And with Kenny currently holding every world record in the class three category, there is every chance Waddon will again be left trailing in his slip stream.
Thankfully, the pair – along with Shaun McKeown – will join forces in the team sprint which possibly represents Waddon’s best chance of striking gold.
Waddon, who lives in Chorley with his wife Natalie Jones, who is a Paralympian swimmer, sprung to prominence in the European Championships in 2001 when he won three gold medals.
Since then he has won gold medals in the World Championships and the Paralympic World Cup and his consistency over the years has seen him earn regular visits to the podium.
Waddon, who has cerebral palsy, has dedicated more than 20 years to sport. He first took it up after watching the Tour de France on the television when he was 14-years-old.
So it is no surprise that he ranks Chris Boardman and Bradley Wiggins as his sporting heroes.
But should King Kenny help him clinch that elusive gold medal clean sweep, he too could expect to join Waddon’s exclusive list of heroes.