A SECOND PARALYMPIC GOLD has been won in Rio by cyclist Steve Bate and his guide Adam Duggleby.
The pair added to the velodrome gold medal with one on the road, winning the tandem time trial eight seconds clear of their nearest rivals.
Until recently Steve was a vital member of the Lossiemouth community, having arrived from his native New Zealand to spend eight years working for Outfit Moray. Steve taught bicycle maintenance to many from throughout Moray in his role as manager of the Bike Revolution offshoot operated by the charity from their Shore Street premises in the Moray town.
He reluctantly left Moray to pursue a Paralympic dream after discovering he had an even greater talent on a bike – now that dream is a reality with two gold medals.
Steve suffered from a disease that robbed him of his peripheral vision, but the 39-year-old refused to allow that to slow him down – as his times on the tandem with Adam has clearly demonstrated.
It was after becoming the first visually impaired person to climb the 3000-foot ‘El Capitan’ in the Yosemite National Park in 2012 that Steve was convinced he might have a career in Paralympic cycling.
He admitted, however, that climbing the Paralympic podium was a much more difficult challenge: “Climbing on to that podium has been the hardest climb I have ever done. El Capitan, I don’t want to take anything away from that, because it was really hard, but that was on all my terms.
“You don’t need to qualify for anything. You just need the skills and go and give it a bash. Coming here, you are constantly being tested, it wasn’t on our terms.”
All Steve’s friends in Moray send their heartfelt congratulations.
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