Ten current Paralympic and world champions have been named in a 56-strong GB & NI team sponsored by Sainsbury’s heading to the IPC Athletics European Championships in Swansea on 18-23 August.
Six-time Paralympic gold medallist David Weir (coach: Jenny Archer) will make his first appearance in a GB & NI vest since winning four gold medals at London 2012, while Jonnie Peacock (Steve Fudge) will be looking to hold all of the major T44 100m titles and will go in to the championships ranked number one in Europe.
Richard Whitehead (Keith Antoine), who is also the reigning T42 200m Paralympic and world gold, will have his sights set on retaining the European title he won in 2012 in Stadskanaal, Netherlands.
Hannah Cockroft (Jenni Banks) and Aled Davies (Hughes), who have started the season in imperious form claiming world records in their respective events, will head to South Wales with their eyes focused on a place on top of the podium at the Swansea University International Sports Village.
Also amongst some of the experienced names in the team is Stef Reid (Rana Reider). The 29 year old will head to the IPC Athletics European Championships in the form of her life, after breaking the F44 long jump world record at the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix earlier this month with a leap of 5.47m.
Swansea looks set to renew another exciting rivalry with world T38 100m champion Sophie Hahn (Joseph McDonnell) and reigning European 100m champion Margarita Goncharova. After regaining her world record two days after losing it to the Russian in May, Hahn took the scalp of her main challenger with victory at the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games on Sunday.
Paralympic and world F51 discus champion and world record holder Josie Pearson (Hughes) is among another big contingent of Welsh-based athletes in the team, which also includes world F46 javelin champion Hollie Arnold (Hughes), who has added nearly three metres to her personal best in 2014.
Libby Clegg (Antoine) (T12 100m & 200m), Stephen Miller (Ros Miller) (F32 club throw) are among a select group of three aiming to defend their titles, while Paralympic and world silver medallist Dan Greaves (Jim Edwards), who broke the 60m barrier in the F44 discus for the first time in his career this month, will be looking to continue his rich vein of form.
Among one of the new names on the team is Maria Lyle, who has broken the T35 100m and 200m world record this year at the age of just 14, is among 15 athletes, who will make their first GB & NI appearance in a senior team in Swansea.
Paralympic T53 100m gold medallist Mickey Bushell (Jenny Archer) will lead the line in the 100m and 200m, with GB & NI teammate and world champion Paul Blake (Rob Ellchuk) going for glory in the T36 100m and 400m.
Paralympic Head Coach Paula Dunn said: “The IPC Athletics European Championships in Swansea is vitally important in the development of the team over the course of the next few years. There are a number of familiar faces once again in the team, but also what is encouraging is the emerging talent breaking into the ranks, which puts us in a really strong position moving forwards.
“It’s another home championships for the team and it will be great to get the support of not only the local Welsh community, but also the rest of the British public coming from further afield. We saw how much a home crowd spurred on the athletes in London, and it would be great to give the team another rapturous welcome in South Wales,” added Dunn, who will lead the GB & NI team sponsored by Sainsbury’s in Swansea.
GB & NI team for the IPC Athletics European Championships in Swansea (18-23 August):
Ola Abidogun (coach: Grant Barker) – T47 100m, 200m
Jonathan Adams (Jim Edwards) – T37 shot put
Hollie Arnold (Anthony Hughes) – F46 javelin
Joshua Bain (Paul Welch) – F37 javelin
Graeme Ballard (Tabo Huntley) – T36 100m, 200m, 400m
Paul Blake (Rob Ellchuk) – T36 100m, 400m
Olivia Breen (Jonas Tawiah-Dodoo) – T38 100m, long jump
Jonathan Broom-Edwards (Fuzz Ahmed) – F44 high jump
Sally Brown (Keith Antoine) – T47 100m, 400m
Mickey Bushell (Jenny Archer) – T53 100m, 200m
Joanna Butterfield (Phil Peat) – F51 club throw, discus
Libby Clegg (Keith Antoine) – T12 100m, 200m
Hannah Cockroft (Jenni Banks) – T34 100m, 800m
Aled Davies (Anthony Hughes) – F42 shot put, discus
Kyron Duke (Anthony Hughes) – F41 shot put, javelin
Dan Greaves (Jim Edwards) – F44 discus
Thomas Green (Kenneth Green) – F32 club throw
Sophie Hahn (Joseph McDonnell) – T38 100m, 400m
Maria Hawkeswood (Alison O’Riordan) – F56 javelin
Jordan Howe (Keith Antoine) – T35 100m, 200m
Abi Hunnisett (Camilla Thrush) – F32 club throw
Jade Jones (Ian Thompson/Tanni Grey-Thompson) – T54 800m, 1500m, 5000m
Moatez Jomni (Jenny Archer) – T53 400m, 800m
Beverley Jones (Dave Caldecourt) – F37 discus, shot put
Rhys Jones (Keith Antoine) – T37 100m, 200m
Sophie Kamlish (Rob Ellchuk) – T44 100m, 200m
Sammi Kinghorn (Ian Mirfin) – T53 100m, 400m,
Maria Lyle (Henry Gray) – T35 100m, 200m
Erin McBride (Robert Roberts) – T13 100m, 400m
Jenny McLoughlin (Keith Antoine) – T37 100m, 200m
Dean Miller (Bud Baldaro) – T37 1500m
Stephen Miller (Ros Miller) – F32 club throw
Dzaier Neil (Alison O’Riordan) – F52 discus
Holly Neill (Andrew Roda) – F41 discus, shot put
Mel Nicholls (Job King) – T34 100m, 800m
Danny Nobbs (Tim Newenham) – F54 javelin
Georgina Oliver (Pete Wyman)– T54 100m, 400m
Stephen Osborne (Jenni Banks) – T51 100m, 400m
Jonnie Peacock (Steve Fudge) – T44 100m
Josie Pearson (Anthony Hughes) – F51 club throw, discus
Gemma Prescott (Mike Woods) – F32 club throw
Stef Reid (Rana Reider) – F44 long jump, 100m
Ben Rowlings (Job King) – T34 100m, 400m, 800m
Sam Ruddock (Joseph McDonnell) – T35 shot put
Ben Rushgrove (Rob Ellchuk) – T36 100m
Rob Smith (Jenni Banks) – T52 100m, 400m, 1500m
Nathan Stephens (Anthony Hughes) – F57 javelin, discus
Laura Sugar (Femi Akinsanya) – T44 100m, 200m, long jump
Isaac Towers (Pete Wyman) – T34 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m
Kieran Tschierniawsky (Jim Edwards) F33 discus, shot put
David Weir (Jenny Archer) T54 400m, 800m, 1500m, 5000m
Richard Whitehead (Keith Antoine) T42 200m
Bradley Wigley (Jane Coia) – T38 100m & 200m
Rob Womack (Shaun Pickering) – F55 shot put, discus
Shelly Woods (Jenny Archer) – T54 800m, 1500m, 5000m
Bethany Woodward (Jared Deacon) – T37 100m, 400m
To purchase tickets for the IPC Athletics European Championships in Swansea, please visit https://www.paralympic.org/swansea-2014/tickets