Date: Thursday, 04 December 2014
Posted by: Cycling Southland

Laura and Emma Southland ChampsLaura Fairweather and Emma Foy will be sporting their rainbow jerseys as the New Zealand para-cycling team goes chasing qualification points for the Rio Paralympics in Invercargill this weekend.

The tandem pairing, who have been together for a year now, won the 3km pursuit in world record time at this year's world championships at Aguascalientes, along with bronze in the 250m sprint and a fourth placing in the 1000m time trial.

Although Dargaville-raised Foy is based in Cambridge and Fairweather owns and runs a cafe in the remote Catlins area south of Invercargill with her husband, they have been able to get together once a month to continue building their partnership.

Foy has a visual impairment and rides at the back of the tandem, the position known as the stoker.

Fairweather is the sighted pilot, a role she first came to prominence with cycling in as part of a combination with Phillipa Gray when the pair won gold, silver and bronze at the London Paralympics in 2012.

Gray is now riding with Southlander and former representative netballer Kylie Young and they will also be riding with qualification points in mind this weekend.

"The combination is coming together really well now," Fairweather said.

Fairweather said it would be exciting to wear the rainbow jersey bestowed on all riders who win a world title, especially in an important meeting on her home velodrome.

The C1 Para-Cycling Open will be held in conjunction with the Southland track championships at the SIT velodrome this weekend.

Amongst nearly 140 entries across the two events, a para-cycling team from Australia will also be competing.

Events start from 6pm on Friday. 

Article and photo courtesy The Southland Times

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