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Cooke and Bridgwood gold; five medals to Australia on opening day of UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships

01 Aug 2015

It was a golden start for Team Australia at the 2015 UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships <http://sitedesq.imgstg.com/clubscripts/linkblast.cfm?key=03528E66-6C9B-46AC-9C8A-F5B0028EDC43&memID=6207688>  in Nottwil, Switzerland on Thursday with wins to Carol Cooke AM (ACT) and Kyle Bridgwood (QLD) in the time trials.

Cooke made it three in a row in the women's T2 final, while team debutant Bridgwood claimed his maiden world title in the men's C4 event.

Australia took five medals on the day with silvers to Alistair Donohoe (VIC), and Alexandra Green (NSW), plus bronze to Simone Kennedy (NSW).

It was a dominant performance from dual reigning world champion Cooke who completed the 14-kilometre course in a time of 28 minutes and five seconds to claim gold by over one minute on the Jill Walsh (USA) and Jana Majunke (GER).

"It feels surreal, but I've worked hard to prepare so I'm extremely happy," said Cooke. "To win three in a row is unbelievable!

"It feels like a dream and I keep waiting for the bubble to burst! I'm over the moon with the win."

On his Australian team debut, Bridgwood (QLD) claimed his maiden world title in the men's C4 event.

Bridgwood covered the 31-kilometre course in 46mins 28seconds, 21 seconds ahead of the silver medallist Sergey Pudov (RUS) and over one minute ahead of bronze medallist Patrik Kuril (SVK).

"It was great to be selected for the Australian team, and to see the hard work in training paying off," explained Bridgwood. "The win still hasn't quite sunk in yet, but I'm sure it will!

"I was really surprised at my result. I wasn't sure what to expect at the World Championships, compared to a World Cup."

Alistair Donohoe collected silver in the men's C5 category behind Yehor Dementyev (Ukraine) with Andrea Tarlao (Italy) taking bronze. Donohoe improved on his sixth place finish in 2014 finishing just 26 seconds off gold. Michael Gallagher finished tenth.

In the women's C4 Alexandra Green earned the silver medal behind Shawn Morelli of the United States. Bronze went to Megan Fisher also the USA, who edged out Susan Powell by one second.

Earlier in the day Simone Kennedy picked up the bronze medal in the women's C3 behind Jamie Whitmore Cardenas (United States) and Denise Schindler (Germany). Bianca Woolford finished fourth in the T1.

Racing continues Friday with handcycle time trials. Grant Nichel (H1), Emilie Miller (H1) and Nigel Barley (H4) will be in action for Team Australia.

Team Australia

*       Sue Powell (C4) ACT
*       Alex Green (C4) NSW
*       Simone Kennedy (C3)  NSW
*       Michael Gallagher (C5) VIC
*       Alistair Donohoe (C5) VIC
*       David Nicholas (C3) QLD
*       Kyle Bridgwood (C5) QLD
*       Carol Cooke (T2) VIC
*       Bianca Woolford (T1) SA
*       Nigel Barley (H4) WA
*       Stuart Tripp (H5) VIC
*       Emilie Miller (H1) NSW
*       Grant Nickel (H1) NSW


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WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE


The 2015 UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships <http://sitedesq.imgstg.com/clubscripts/linkblast.cfm?key=03528E66-6C9B-46AC-9C8A-F5B0028EDC43&memID=6207688>  in Nottwil, Switzerland, which run 29 July – 2 August 2015.

The Championships will feature road races and time trials across a number of classifications - bicycles (C1-5), tri-cycles (T1-2), hand-cycles (H1-5) and Tandems in both the men and women’s categories.

The 2015 Championships provide valuable qualification points for the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games.

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