Cerebral Palsy Sport inducts Paralympians into Hall of Fame

Paralympic athletes Stephen Miller MBE and Graeme Ballard have been inducted into Cerebral Palsy Sport Hall of Fame at our Awards evening on 6th October 2018 – World Cerebral Palsy Day.

Stephen Miller MBE

Stephen has represented Great Britain for over 20 years, competing in 6 Paralympic Games, 7 World Championships and 6 European Championships – so far winning 28 international medals. He has won 3 Paralympic titles in a row and held the F32 Club Throw world record from 1997-2008 and more recently he has just won a bronze medal at the IPC European Championships in Italy in June 2016 and he was honoured in the 2016 New Years Honours List by Her Majesty the Queen with an MBE.

In July 2016 Stephen was named as part of the Great Britain team for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games and brought home a truly well deserved Bronze medal.

Stephen  has had a fabulous 2018 season and kicked it off in fine still with a season best throw of 30.11m to win gold  at the 2018 World Para Athletics Dubai Athletics Grand Prix. He ended the season with an incredible Silver medal at the World Para Athletics European Championships in Berlin.

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Ali Talbot, CEO of Cerebral Palsy Sport said of Stephen:

“Stephen is a true ambassador for para athletics, club throwing and for Cerebral Palsy Sport. Stephen still takes part in our athletics series events and is incredibly encouraging  to younger athletes who may be starting their sporting journey or taking part in an event for the first time. He is a truly respectful competitor and always acknowledges the contribution the officials and volunteers give to our events. We are delighted to bestow this honour of being inducted into our Hall of Fame in 2018 and it is so well deserved”.

Speaking of his  Cerebral Palsy Sport Hall of Fame award, Stephen said:

“It was CP Sport that helped me to get into sport and they provided me with my earliest opportunities on my sporting journey, so to receive this award is a truly proud moment for me. I know how important sport is for people with cerebral palsy, and I hope others can take inspiration from my story and have their own sporting journey. As always I have to dedicate this award to all those that have supported me, especially my parents who are my heroes.”

Emily Stewart collected Stephen’s award on his behalf.

 


Graeme Ballard

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It is fitting in the year where Graeme hung up his competitive spikes after 14 years of international para athletics, that we honour him with the Hall of Fame award.

After taking up athletics at the age of 19 through a Cerebral Palsy Sport athletics event, Graeme’s para athletics career has gone from strength to strength.

Graeme first ran the Cerebral Palsy Sport nationals in September 1999 and has been a member of CP since then. He competed at CPISRA games in 2001 and gained 3 medals  – 2 individual medals and 1 relay.

His roll of achievements are recorded as:

  • 2002 World Championships in Lille 1 Bronze medal
  • 2003 European Championships in Assen 2 silver and 1 bronze
  • 2004 Paralympic Games in Athens  – won 1 bronze
  • 2005 Combined World & European Championships in Espoo – won 2 Gold medals and 1 recognised for World and 1 for European
  • 2006 World Championships in Assen – won 1 Silver
  • 2012 European Championships in  Holland – won 1 silver 1 bronze
  • 2012 Broke the world record 11.98 and won Paralympics Silver medal
  • 2013 World  Championships – won 1 Bronze
  • 2014 European Championships in Swansea – 2 Silvers
  • 2016 European Championships in Grossetto 2 silver

Although Graeme missed out on medals in 2008 and 2016 he was still a member of the British Para Athletics  team and also a member of the team at the World Championships in Christchurch, Doho and London where he came in 4th at all three competitions only just missing out on the medals.

In August 2018 Graeme won an incredible Gold medal at the World Para Athletics European Championships in Berlin for the  T36 100m with a season’s best time of 12.32 seconds seeing him ease to the line clear of the rest of the field.

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Speaking of Graeme’s achievements, Ali Talbot CEO of Cerebral Palsy Sport said:

” We are delighted to be able to honour Graeme’s remarkable para athletics career and all his achievements by inducting into our Hall of Fame. Graeme is a true ambassador for para athletics and he supports so many of our SportStart events to inspire and encourage children and young people with cerebral palsy by sharing his message. He also supports our National Athletics Championships by coming along and presenting medals to younger athletes who aspire to achieve what he has. We wish Graeme well as he hangs up his international competitive spikes and we look forward to supporting him in his next endeavours”.

Graeme spoke of his pride of receiving this honour. He said:

“It is a great honour and a privilege to be nominated into the Hall of Fame. I hope that I can do justice to the role and look forward to seeing everyone at weekend.”

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Stephen Miller strikes silver at the WPA European Athletics Championships

Congratulations to our Sporting Ambassador Stephen Miller MBE who has struck silver at the World Para Athletics European Championships in Berlin.

Stephen  became a Paralympic club throw champion in 1996 – took silver for his sixth successive European medal in the F32 Club Throw with an throw of 29.78m during the morning session on day three.

Stephen, of Gateshead Harriers pushed the current world record holder and Paralympic champion

Miller – a three-time Paralympic champion – rolled back the years as he produced a consistent series of throws, with his second-round effort the best of the rounds. With athletes taking all six throws in one series, the pressure was on Stephen to deliver his best within that timeframe. After a starting mark of 28.58m, his second effort was recorded as 29.78m, raising the bar for his opponents who followed.

Poland’s Maciej Sochal defended his European title with a best of 31.12m which left Miller to pick up his sixth European medal.

Stephen reflected afterwards: “I didn’t feel like I threw very well today. I didn’t really fulfil my potential so I’m a bit disappointed. The way it turned out, I think I could have won the gold medal, so it is hard to take when you know you could have done a little bit better. But you take it on the chin. A silver is a silver and it is another one to add to the collection. The story continues but it is frustrating.

“I was consistent but to be honest, I never properly hit one. But I had great preparation coming into this one – I’ve had great support from British Athletics & the National Lottery this year which has helped me a great deal. It is always a pleasure to represent Great Britain & Northern Ireland.”

On adding another medal to his ever-growing collection, Stephen added: “This is my sixth European medal, I’ve won a medal at every Europeans now, so it is great to continue that run. There were not many competitors there today, but you can only face who is here. To win another medal is a great honour – it is not something I take lightly.”

Congratulations Stephen from all the team at Cerebral Palsy Sport

Stephen - europeans  Stephen Miller

 

 

MBE awarded to Craig Carscadden for services to disability sport

Former Paralympian athlete Craig Carscadden  has been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s New Years Honours List 2018 for his service to disability sport.

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Craig started his involvement with disability sport as a CP athlete. He was a middle distance competitive athlete competing in the 1996 Paralympic Games. He then continued his involvement in sport by being a Middle Distance Coach for the Great Britain Team in the 2000 Sydney and the 2004 Athens Paralympics. Craig is still involved in coaching today as a senior Endurance Coach for  Thornbury Running Club in England.

Craig Carscadden

During the ten-year period of 1998 – 2008, Craig was  our Athletics Co-ordinator here at Cerebral Palsy Sport. His roles included organising coaching for athletes of all levels of ability and planning competitions at national level including the successful Grand Prix series.

Additionally, Craig held volunteer roles fro 6 years on the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) athletics committee from 2005. As an active member of this committee, he provided constructive input to determine the competition programme and qualifying standards for both 2006 World Championships and 2008 Paralympics.

Craig is a former Trustee of Cerebral Palsy Sport and is currently head of Development of CPISRA and Chair of the CPISRA International RaceRunning Executive Committee.

Craig has led CPISRA development of adaptive sports for a number of years and through his leadership, guidance and often significant direct contribution has evolved structured and real opportunities for different types of disability impairment, thereby creating competitive sports participation including pathway to elite international competition for groups of people that would otherwise not have had such opportunity.

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Craig has also been responsible for developing classification systems for RaceRunning and Table Cricket for CPISRA. He has also developed rules and regulations for RaceRunning and Slalom and carried out numerous coaching clinics.

Craig has supported Cerebral Palsy Sport’s RaceRunning developments and sits on our National RaceRunning Strategic Development Group representing CPISRA and he has also supported our training days and classification programme for RaceRunning.

He said the award came as “a complete surprise”.

Our sincere congratulations Craig on such a well deserved honour from all of the team and Trustees at Cerebral Palsy Sport.

 

CP Sport Ambassadors to support Training Day and Awards

Cerebral Palsy Sport are delighted to announce that the charity’s Ambassadors will be attending and supporting the upcoming Athletics, RaceRunning and Swimming Training Camp on Sunday 8th October 2017 at Harvey Hadden Sports Village in Nottingham.

The Training Camp is for participants, and coaches working with athletes or swimmers in a regular training environment who want to become more inclusive and/or increase knowledge of CP and training techniques. There will also be a RaceRunning taster and RaceRunning classification available on the same day.

The Cerebral Palsy Sport Ambassadors include Paralympics and World Class athletes with a huge amount of experience who can provide an interesting insight into sport at the top level for those with cerebral palsy. Read more about our Ambassadors here.

Cerebral Palsy Sport Ambassador and Paralympian Matthew Walker will be coaching the swimming session at the Training Camp. Matthew has won multiple medals and has been to four Paralympic Games. In 2009 he was awarded an MBE.

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There will be an opportunity to meet and hear from some of the Ambassadors in the afternoon including Sam Ruddock, Graeme Ballard and Stephen Miller MBE who competed at the World Para Athletics Championships this summer and the Rio Paralympics in 2016,  and we’ll even have one or two present our annual awards so don’t forget to nominate for your achiever, volunteer, coach or club of the year here!

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The Cerebral Palsy AGM will be taking place at 4pm followed by the annual Awards at 4.30m. Further details here.

Register for the Training Camp and RaceRunning classification here

Details about the RaceRunning taster session can be found here

 

 

 

 

 

Sascha Kindred OBE is awarded Freeman of the County of Herefordshire

Herefordshire Council members voted on Friday 16 December to award the greatest honour it has in its power to bestow on any individual resident, namely to admit Sascha Kindred OBE to be honorary Freeman of the County of Herefordshire. This is the first time this award has been made to an individual by the council.

Sascha Kindred

The special meeting was in recognition of the outstanding contribution that Sascha, who lives and trains in the county, has made to swimming in general, and to the Paralympic Games, World Championships and European Championships. The honour recognises the major successes, medals and world records that he has achieved, particularly during the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games where Sascha won his seventh Paralympic gold medal and broke the world record for the men’s 200 metre individual medley.

Sascha Kindred OBE said:

“I am very pleased to have been bestowed this high honour by the county of Herefordshire. Competing at six Paralympic Games has been a great achievement and to be recognised by the council and local community is a great honour.”

Councillor Brian Wilcox and Sascha Kindred

Sasha has competed and attended many Cerebral Palsy Sport swimming events over the years, competing in Nationals and World Games, saying;

 “ I have been fortunate enough to be involved with CP Sport for over 25 years and they have helped me become a successful Paralympic Swimmer and Champion.  CP Sport spotted me as a young boy who could swim and then helped me develop my passion for the sport by giving me information and encouragement to get to the next level.  They helped me with training and completion opportunities which i owe them a lot for.  Competing with them in places like Belgium, Germany and sunny Nottingham has given me fond memories and I will continue to support them to help the next generation of young children get into swimming.  CP Sport is an awesome charity to support and in particular swimming.”

To find out more about Cerebral Palsy Sport swimming opportunities, please click here

 

CP Sport celebrates Paralympics GB Carnival

On Saturday 17th September, Cerebral Palsy Sport joined Paralympics GB and a range of other national sports governing bodies including British Rowing and the Tennis Foundation of sport to celebrate the Paralympic Movement at a Paralympics GB Carnival in Nottingham.

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Taking place in Nottingham’s Market Square to coincide with the Paralympics in Rio, the event provided the opportunity to showcase a range of disability sports and Cerebral Palsy Sport provided great demonstrations of RaceRunning to an enthusiastic audience.

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The Lord Mayor of Nottingham watched our RaceRunners in action along with Paralympian Natalie Waddon.

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The event was supported by our Sporting Ambassador Leon Taylor, our Young Sporting Ambassador Ellie Simpson and the England RaceRunning team.

For further information on RaceRunning please visit our website

 

Inspired young swimmer sends good luck message to Paralympian

Five year old Tiernan came along to watch our Winchester Swimming Development Gala in January 2016. Tiernan was so inspired he is now swimming weekly and can’t wait to take part in the next gala. Sascha attended the gala as our VIP and did a question and answer session as well as presenting the medals and certificates to the swimmers. 
Tiernan has now sent us a special message for Sascha Kindred ahead of the Rio Paralympics. Sascha will be competing in his sixth Paralympic Games, having already achieved twelve medals, six of which are gold. 
  “I went to a Swimming Gala in Winchester and saw Sascha’s gold medal. Good luck in Rio! Love Tiernan xxxxxx”
Tiernan and Sascha Kindred Jan 2016
Photo courtesy of Teirnan’s parents.

British Paralympic Association launch new strategy

Today, the British Paralympic Association (BPA) have launched their new 2016-2021 strategy Inspiring Excellence.

The BPA have committed to focusing harder than ever in the next five years on combining excellence on the field of play with inspiration off it, as they reveal their new Strategic Plan for 2016-2021.
Called Inspiring Excellence, the plan outlines the intended vision, mission, values, strategic priorities, organisational structure and planning for the period from the Rio 2016 to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and commits the British Paralympic Association (BPA) to a four year programme of targeted planning and continued development.

Building on their previous ‘Maximising Momentum’ strategy, the Plan will guide BPA through the 2018 Pyeongchang Paralympic Winter Games and to the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Summer Games.

The BPA has a unique responsibility:

  • to select, manage and take the Great Britain and Northern Ireland team to the Paralympic Games

The Plan promises the organisation will focus on delivering the highest level of service to winter and summer athletes in their ambitions over the cycle. Core to the plan is the retained vision “Through sport, inspire a better world for disabled people”.

The BPA’s ambition is to deliver real and lasting change in society through the inspirational impact of Paralympic athletes on the field of play and effective promotion of the opportunity for and impact of para-sport off it.
A copy of the strategy can be downloaded here: Strategic_Plan_2016-2021

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14 CP Footballers selected to take on the world in Brazil

The British Paralympic Association (BPA) today announced the 14 footballers who will compete for ParalympicsGB at Rio 2016.

Of the 14 athletes, all but two of the team make their Paralympic debut; only former Everton FC Academy player Michael Barker and Scottish veteran Jonathan Paterson return from London and both will compete in their third Games.

Among the new players are former Birmingham City FC player Jack Rutter and Sean Highdale who previously played for Liverpool FC and also represented England at Under-16s level. Both Jack and Sean joined the national football 7-a-side teams after acquired brain injuries. The squad also features former Tranmere Rovers forward Ollie Nugent, who currently plays for Chester FC.

The ParalympicsGB team will be drawn from several of the home nations, with players from the English, Scottish and Northern Irish squads – many of whom competed internationally for their home nations at recent World and European Championships.

Jack Rutter, captain of the team said today:

“There is no greater honour than to represent your country on the international stage and it’s a proud moment for me today to be announced as captain of this team of outstanding players.

” It’s a proud moment for me today to be announced as captain of this team of outstanding players.”

Jack Rutter

“We’ve come together to create a really competitive force and we believe we’re up there with the best teams in the world. We’re going out to Rio to make everyone back at home proud, and I hope the nation will Supercharge the team to some truly memorable performances.”

“I hope the nation will Supercharge the team to some truly memorable performances.”Jack Rutter

Jonathan Paterson, who first made his Paralympic debut in Beijing, said:

“This will be my third Paralympic Games and I don’t think we’ve ever been stronger. The amount of progress we’ve made throughout this cycle has been impressive, and it’s great to have new faces on the team who have created greater strength in depth. I can’t wait to step on to the pitch for the first time in Rio.”

“I don’t think we’ve ever been stronger.”Jonathan Paterson

Penny Briscoe MBE, ParalympicsGB Chef de Mission for Rio 2016, said:

“This is a fantastic and talented group of players and I’d like to pay credit to all of the home nations for the excellent work they have undertaken to identify new talent and to bring them through to compete on the international stage.

“They have the opportunity to shine when the Games get under way in 86 days’ time.”Penny Briscoe MBE

“I’d also like to congratulate the players for all of the hard work which has led to their selection to the team. They have the opportunity to shine when the Games get under way in 86 days’ time.”

Jeff Davis, Team Leader, said:

“I am really proud to lead these players as we prepare to compete at the Rio Paralympics, it’s a fantastic opportunity to showcase this sport and I believe their hard work will pay dividends at the Games. The top teams are incredibly competitive and there will be no easy matches, but we feel ready to take on the challenge.”

“We feel ready to take on the challenge.”Jeff Davis

The selected athletes for the football 7-a-side are:

Jack Rutter
Home town: Gloucester

Sean Highdale
Hometown: Liverpool

Emyle Rudder
Home town: Stratford, London

Matt Crossen
Home town: Stockton on Tees

Ollie Nugent
Home town: Irby, Wirral

Giles Moore
Home town: Ilminster

Ryan Kay
Home town: Peterborough

Michael Barker
Home town: Liverpool

Liam Irons
Home town: Dunstable

Martin Hickman
Home town: Lennoxtown / Motherwell

David Porcher
Home town: Livingston

James Blackwell
Home town: Bristol

Jonathan Paterson
Home town: Motherwell

David Leavy
Home town: Downpatrick

Images and photos courtesy of Paralympics GB

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Sporting Ambassador Sam Ruddock to captain British team at Europeans

Cerebral Palsy Sport’s Sporting Ambassador Sam Ruddock has been appointed one of the captains for the British Athletics team competing at the IPC European Championships.

Holly Neill (coach: Andrew Roda) and Sam Ruddock (Jim Edwards) will captain the British Athletics team at the IPC Athletics European Championships in Grosseto, Italy starting tomorrow morning.

After a personal best in the IPC Athletics World Championships F35 shot put final last October led him to fifth position, Sam has gone from strength to strength in the event.  His upbeat attitude and stature within the team has seen him earn the role of men’s team captain. Ruddock competed over the sprints at the Paralympic Games in 2012 but four years on, he has progressed into one of the most competitive shot putters within the F35 event and he is looking for a strong result in Grosseto.

On his captaincy, the Loughborough-based athlete commented: “I am beyond proud – to be told I would captain this squad during this year was such a shock. When Paula (Dunn) pulled me to one side to tell me I genuinely thought I was in trouble. I had to ask her to repeat the question just to make sure I wasn’t hearing things!”

A modest Ruddock added: “There is so much experience and talent on this team – I would put them ahead of me in terms of their nature and the way they act. Of course I’m proud, to even represent Great Britain is an honour but to captain your country is something really special.

“I have to thank my coach Jim Edwards for his continued support and those who are always in my corner. They have helped me to get into this position and I hope I can continue to make them proud.”

Head Coach Paula Dunn spoke about why she chose Neill and Ruddock to lead the 48 strong-team at the IPC Athletics European Championships.

Dunn said: “Holly and Sam both bring great qualities to the role of team captain. Both have valuable experience on a number of GB teams and have a strong mind set and attitude which will inspire the rest of the squad.

“The IPC Athletics European Championships will be a key stepping stone for a number of athletes targeting the Rio Paralympics later this year but also acts as an enriching experience for those team members looking ahead to the World ParaAthletics Championships in London during 2017 and Tokyo 2020. It is an exciting team and I’m looking forward to seeing how they perform on the European stage.”

The action gets underway on Saturday 11 June with seven Brits in finals competing for European medals.

Congratulations Sam and best of luck in the competition!