Leeds's Paralympic champions tell of pride at bringing home medals

Triple paralympic champion Hannah Cockroft has spoken of her pride at bringing home the gold ahead of a homecoming parade celebration the region's athletes in Leeds.

Tuesday, 27th September 2016, 5:23 pm
Updated Wednesday, 5th October 2016, 2:15 pm
File photo dated 14-09-2016 of Great Britain's Hannah Cockroft poses with her gold medal from the Women's 400 metres T34 Final. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday September 18, 2016. Wheelchair racer Hannah Cockroft won her second title of Rio 2016 and fourth in all with victory in the T34 400m, a new event on the programme. The win came despite a mishap with her racing chair, when the bus driver tripped over it in transit and bent the front forks the wrong way. See PA story OLYMPICS British Highlights. Photo credit should read Adam Davy/PA Wire.

The wheelchair sprinter, who won three gold medals in Rio, is among a host of Paralympic stars from Leeds who are touring the city centre tomorrow, including Kadeena Cox, David Stone and Ali Jawab.

Miss Cockroft, from Halifax, told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “My message has always been that you can do whatever you put your mind to.

“The four years training were worth it, I actually did what a lot of people said I couldn’t do.”

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The 24-year-old said she is proud to be from Yorkshire, and that she wore earrings with the region’s white rose on when racing in Rio.

She said: “I think Yorkshire is now being recognised as a sporting superpower, with the likes of myself, Nicola Adams and the Brownlee brothers.

“Yorkshire people don’t like to get left behind and we find a way to win.”

Fellow Paralympic champion Kadeena Cox, from Leeds, won two gold medals at the games in athletics and cycling.

The victory came just two years after she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

She said the support she received from home helped spur her on at the games in Rio. Miss Cox said: “Winning the medals was overwhelming because it is what I have worked for over the last 18 months.

“I had pretty much taken myself from my hospital bed so actually achieving it is amazing. The support I have had has been great.

“Knowing that I had the support of people while I was there was amazing.”

The pair will celebrate at the parade in Leeds tomorrow night.