Sam is a Paralympic track & field athlete for Great Britain and Northern Ireland, who made his international debut at the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Sam is profoundly affected by cerebral palsy, specifically spastic diplegia, impacting balance, coordination and flexibility in various muscles across the lower body.
He was a keen sportsman late into his teens, often playing football, basketball and rugby. It was however at Loughborough University that he started to play American football. In December 2011, Sam was spotted by a sprints coach, Joe McDonnell, whilst Sam was taking part in the team’s sprint drills. Sam ran his first races in April 2012 before being internationally classified, as his times improved through May till July until his selection to the Great Britain Paralympic team.
In his Paralympic debut in London, Sam ran a time of 13.92 in the T35 100m heats which left him only 0.600 seconds short of the final. Five days later, he returned to the Olympic Stadium in the T35 200m heats to run a new personal best of 28.75.
Since the 2013-2014 season, he has switched events, competing at the 2013 IPC World Championships in Lyon as a sprinter and the 2014 IPC European Championships in Swansea as a shot putter. He chose to switch from track to field to further his development in the lead up to the 2016 Paralympic Games and beyond towards Tokyo 2020. In July 2016 Sam was named as part of the Great Britain team for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. Well done Sam.
When asked how he felt about being asked to be a Sporting Ambassador for Cerebral Palsy Sport Sam said “It was a very humbling surprise being asked to be a Sporting Ambassador for CP Sport, having only been involved in cerebral palsy athletics for three years. It is fantastic to be given a role, where I can help promote the fantastic work the charity does to facilitate and provide sporting opportunities for those affected by cerebral palsy.”