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Annapolitan Clark Rachfal Awarded Paralympic World Cup

| July 20, 2011, 02:18 PM | 0 Comments

On July 10, Annapolis native Clark Rachfal secured the men’s tandem Union Cyclist International (UCI) Paralympic Road Cycling World Cup  title for the U.S. Competing as a blind tandem cyclist with his  sighted pilot, Dave Swanson (Tucson, AZ) for the U.S. Para-cycling  National Team.

Rachfal and Swanson earned World Cup points by finishing  on the podium in each of their World Cup time trials and road races this season. With bronze medal performances in both their World Cup races in Sydney, Australia in May and a silver medal  performance in their final time trial in Baie-Comeau, Canada on Friday, Rachfal and Swanson led the World Cup ranking by a slim margin with a single 60 mile road race remaining. Again, the duo placed third in the final World Cup race of the year and won the title.

This is the first year the UCI offered a World Cup series for Paralympic cycling and crowned World Cup Champions for each  disability class. “The World Cup title is a nice validation of all our hard work and support we receive from U.S. Paralympics staff and sponsors such as Verizon Communications and PowerBar,” Rachfal said. “It’s great that the UCI is providing us with more opportunities for international competition and elevating Para-cycling to the same level as able-bodied cycling. Winning this title proves how far Dave and I have come since we began to race together in 2007. We know there’s still plenty of work to be done, but it’s comforting to know we’re on the right track to perform at the level we expect as we push towards the 2012 Paralympic Games in London.”

Next up for Rachfal and Swanson is the 2011 UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships this September in Roskilde, Denmark. The pair’s progress may be followed on Rachfal’s blog at: www.crachfal.wordpress.com.



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