Kelda writes- The squad that travelled out to Milan did an awesome job

The squad that travelled to Milan, World Championships did an awesome job. 4 Spots Qualified for Rio including Emma Wiggins pictured.

After not being selected for the Worlds, it’s not been the easiest of times, but I’ve had to get my head down, stay focused and try and stay positive.

The good news is, the week before the squad left for Milan, I managed to hit that target time of sub 54 seconds….and I did it twice! This was a great boost for me, and will hopefully show the coaches that I’m absolutely still in the game for Rio.

The squad that travelled out to Milan for the World Championships did an awesome job and returned home with 2 Golds, 5 silvers and most importantly 4 spots qualified for the Paralympics next year.

There were some amazing efforts from team mates and their performances pays credit to how hard they’ve all been training throughout the season. I was sat in the GB canoeing office, watching the results as they came in, and I was proud to be part of such a strong team.

However, other nations are getting stronger too, and GB didn’t dominate the championships as they have done in the past. I think this is a real lesson to us all for next year….we can’t afford to be complacent, and the other nations seem to have really upped their game. We’re all going to have to be set for some seriously hard work this winter if we’re to keep sight of those Gold medals.

It’s been a tough few weeks for me and things haven’t worked out as I’d hoped, but, I firmly believe I’ve come out of it a stronger, more determined athlete. I’ve proved both on the water and in the gym that I’m making significant gains, and there’s still much more to come!

All that’s left for this season is to now deliver a solid performance in the last regatta of the season next weekend. After that, I’ll have done everything I can possibly do, and it will all come down to the decisions of the coaches and the performance team in October when they meet to allocate funding and places for the Rio training camp in January.

I’ve given it everything, hopefully that’ll be enough for them to still consider me an important part of the squad.

I haven’t had too much time for anything else other than training over the last few weeks, but Climbing Out has run 4 amazing programmes and helped over 60 young people. We’ve one more programme to go in 2015, and the impact on the lives of young people has been simply incredible. Below are the words written by one young lady after attending a Climbing Out programme.

Less than a year ago, I couldn’t walk because a soft tissue and bone cancer called Parasteal Osteosarcoma had taken away my ability to live without aid. Yet a couple of days ago I climbed a mountain in the Lake District. Yes, it hurt, but I wasn’t prepared to let that stop me. Granted, on the way back down I had assistance the full way because my balance is still atrocious, but I DID IT!

Thank you Climbing Out, without your charity I wouldn’t have realised my capabilities and I certainly wouldn’t be beginning to be proud of myself.

You have undeniably and categorically changed my views on life and my attitude towards the world and helped me battle my disorders. Most of all though – the people I met and had the honour of being surrounded by, inspired me when my depression attacked me, motivated me when my mind told me I couldn’t, comforted me when my depression abused me, relied on me when they needed help, respected me, cared for me, and saved my life” Shannon

I’m also incredibly proud to say that 2 young people from Climbing Out have been short listed for the Midlands Children of Courage Awards.

Chelsey Dixon and Molly Evans are both remarkable young ladies, who were diagnosed with cancer at 17yrs and 15yrs respectively. They have showed amazing courage to overcome the challenges they have faced and are both are so deserving of this recognition.

The awards night is on October 23rd, and I’ll be there to support them both and hopefully see them pick up the coveted trophy.

Well, it’s just one week to go until we have a 3 week break from training….and I have to admit, I’m more than ready for that break! However, I won’t be sitting on my bum for too long…..we have performance testing the first 2 days back on the 28thand 29thSept, and I still have a point to prove! So, it might be a break from full training, but I intend to keep working hard and to go back refreshed and ready to show them what I’m made of. It’s gonna be all eyes on Rio!!


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