Search

Paralympic bronze medal winner hopes to change the mindset of a nation

10:00 13 September 2012

Great Britain's Ola Abidogun won bronze in the T46 100m at the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Pic: Anthony Devlin/PA

Great Britain's Ola Abidogun won bronze in the T46 100m at the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Pic: Anthony Devlin/PA

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Sprinter Ola Abidogun hopes the nation will be inspired by the performance of Paralympics GB

Ilford-born Ola Abidogun won a thrilling sprint bronze medal last week and hopes his performance – and that of his Paralympic peers – can change the attitude of the nation.

The 19-year-old clocked 11.23 seconds to take third place in the T46 100 metres final in front of a capacity crowd inside the Olympic Stadium and a nationwide television audience of millions.

His chances of a place on the podium appeared to have gone midway through the race, as the leaders pulled clear.

But a powerful finish saw him sneak into the bronze medal position, as he crossed the line 0.08 seconds ahead of fourth-placed Suwaibidu Galadima from Nigeria.

And Abidogun, who was born without his right forearm, believes the Paralympic message should extend beyond the track, swimming pool and velodrome and into the everyday lives of people nationwide.

“The message I’d like people to take away is that the public care,” Abidogun said. “No matter what happens you have people behind you, whether it’s eight or 80,000 they want you to do the best you possibly can do.

“Whether you’re a regular guy sat behind your desk in an office or an athlete competing in a stadium, there are people pushing you to achieve more.

“You can achieve anything if you’re determined enough. I was determined to win a medal. I didn’t think I would halfway through the race, but my brain clicked in and I felt like I could do it.

“I’d like my performance to inspire people, not to achieve what I’ve done, but to be better than me.

“As long as people try to be better than someone else then they will always look to improve, get quicker and stronger, so I’d like people to better me rather than try and be like me.”

Abidogun, a two-time world junior champion, moved from Essex to Bolton with his family in 2005 – the year London was confirmed as the host city for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

But, despite having relocated north and developed a Lancashire accent, Abidogun insists he felt right at home back in east London.

“Being in the Stadium was comfortable, because this is London, this is where I grew up,” he said.

“Despite the fact I don’t live here anymore I still think of this as home and the crowd as part of my family and they spurred me on.

“They made me feel at home and happy and that I had what it took to win a medal.

“I feel satisfied. Considering I had two events and I had medal prospects in both I feel that I’ve achieved something.

“I’ve only been on the programme for four years. I’m still pretty young and hopefully have many years of competing in major championships ahead of me.”

0 comments

Latest Kilburn & Brent Sports News

Yesterday, 13:09
QPR will assist police with their investigation (Pic: @QPRFC)

The FA are set to widen their probe into the scandal rocking the sport as QPR become the latest club to investigate allegations

QPR defender Grant Hall. (Picture: PA)

Grant Hall believes playing three at the back is the way forward for QPR.

Tue, 17:21
Elliot Benyon (left) has scored 16 goals in all competitions for Wealdstone - but has failed to find the net in his last six games

Wealdstone striker Elliot Benyon remains unfazed by his dry run in front of goal despite drawing a blank for the sixth game in a row.

QPR want to tie Alex Smithies down to a new long-term deal at Loftus Road (Pic: PA).

QPR plan to reward Alex Smithies for his fine form this season by offering the goalkeeper a new and improved contract.

Thursday, December 1, 2016
QPR's director of football Les Ferdinand has launched a staunch defence of his role at the club.

QPR director of football Les Ferdinand has pledged his long-term future to the club – re-emphasising exactly what his role is to supporters who are suggesting otherwise.

Thursday, December 1, 2016
QPR boss Ian Holloway (right) has heaped praise on midfielder Massimo Luongo.

QPR manager Ian Holloway has hailed the qualities Massimo Luongo brings to the table, stressing how crucial the midfielder is to his first-team plans.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016
On his royal visit to Grenada Prince Harry (middle) paid a visit to the Jason Roberts Foundation to see the work they are doing in the Caribbean. Here he is pictured alongside founder Jason Roberts (left) and Sean Fitzpatrick, the former All Blacks captain.

The Stonebridge-based Jason Roberts Foundation continues to reach out far and wide, with Prince Harry witnessing the work they do on his royal visit to Grenada this week.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016
Queens Park Rangers' Conor Washington

QPR manager Ian Holloway has been giving Conor Washington a familar source of inspiration to regain his confidence and get his clinical streak back - re-watching all of his career goals to date on repeat each day.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read Kilburn sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Brent & Kilburn Times
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now