Monday, 10 September 2012


 Last week I went to Brands Hatch to watch a close friend, Karen Darke (, compete in the paralympics hand-cycling competition. Karen broke her back 20 years ago in a climbing accident while a student in Aberdeen with me. Since then, she has done many amazing things - hand-cycled across the Himalayas, skied across Greenland, climbed El Cap etc etc. Her latest adventure was the Paralympics. Her first race was the time trial, in which she won silver! Great effort

Nice medal - thanks for letting me borrow it!

However, perhaps a more inspiring event was the road road race where after a fierce battle with a friend and training partner (Rachel Morris), the two girls were neck and neck ready to grab the Bronze. However, rather than fight it out to the end, the girls decided to lay aside their competitive streak and cross the finish line in a show of friendship and respect for the efforts that each other had to overcome to get there. In the end, a photo finish awarded Rachel with the medal. In the interview afterwards, Karen stated that 'I got a medal the other day so we both have something to celebrate. We've worked so hard together over the last few years we couldn't bear the thought of pipping each other to the line'. It was a beautify finish and one that very much captures the spirit of the Paralympic games. Well done to you both. 

Karen Darke and Rachel Morris crossing the finish line hand in hand at the Paralympics road race.

Next month, Karen is competing to the World para-triathlon championships in New Zealand (I thinks), and then next year I'm hopefully going on a small trip with her to the South Pole!

No comments:

Post a Comment