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Canadian Track and Field Championships – 3 GOLD MEDALS

Posted on January 8th, by Josh Cassidy in wheelchair racing. No Comments

Some great images by Geoff Robins from Mundo Sport Images. Click for higher resolution.

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I was very pleased with how I performed at Nationals, and I am VERY excited about competing at the Commonwealth Games.  See the news release below for more info on the event!


Guelph-based Paralympian, Josh Cassidy has stormed through the Commonwealth Games qualifiers this weekend with a fist full of medals to his name.

Ranked third overall in Canada for ‘all’ parasports, Cassidy needed to place in the top three in the 1500m T54 wheelchair category to go on to India to compete for his country.

A super-charged Cassidy delighted his home crowd at the Varsity Centre, University of Toronto in the Canadian Track & Field Championships, securing his place outright with the gold medal.  For good measure he also took gold in the 800m and the 5000m!

The 5000m on Saturday was Cassidy’s first scalp.  He is known to excel at endurance distances and it was no real surprise to see him cruise across the line in a race where he feels completely confident.

However, in the 1500m, on Sunday, it was a different story.  “I was nervous” said Cassidy, “On the ‘slow’ track; lighter sprinters have an advantage off the gun and in the final sprint.  I decided to hang tight in third for the first two laps, and then bolt hard with a lap and three quarters to go.  It turned out a great day for me, holding the lead for an unquestionable win to capture the spot for the Commonwealth.”

For the same reasons, the 800m could have been even tougher for Cassidy but he played another tactical race.  He stayed close to the front alongside his main threats.  He struck before the bell lap, head down and powering hard for 400m just ahead of the pack in hot pursuit. On the final stretch, as if on nitrous, Cassidy surged – extending an impressive gap to take gold, making it three for three.

His 800m performance was covered live on CBC and it was clear to see Cassidy’s pride at going forward to represent his country.

Said Cassidy, “I am very satisfied with the day and the meet.  Times were slow compared to what I can do on a faster track surface but as slow as this surface was, my times and form were quite impressive. This gives me a great boost for the Commonwealths.”

Cassidy certainly looked calm in Toronto.  He was powerful and completely in control; reading the competition and timing his every move to perfection.  Looking every bit a ‘King of the track’ in Toronto, the pressure is on to achieve ‘crowning glory’ when he take on the Commonwealth in the games in Delhi in October.

The commonwealth qualification tops the good news last week for Cassidy when it was confirmed he will receive a year’s funding award from the CAN Fund which has just announced funding of $6,000 each for 190 athletes coast to coast to help with the two-year countdown to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.  This award and the Delhi experience will stand Cassidy in good stead on his way to fulfill his ambitions in London 2012.

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