We are showcasing each of the 16 contenders in the run-up to the Sports Personality of the Year award on 18 December. Today – Kadeena Cox and Mo Farah.
Kadeena Cox – Age: 25 Sport: Cycling/athletics
Cycling gold in Rio meant she was the first Briton since 1988 to win a medal in two sports at the same Paralympics.
Cox, from Leeds, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis two years ago. She earned a gold in the T38 athletics 400m and triumphed in the C4-5 time trial. She also took athletics silver in the T35-38 4x100m relay and bronze in the T38 100m.
Picked to be GB’s flagbearer at the Rio closing ceremony, a brilliant year also saw her claim a track cycling World Championship gold in the 500m time trial.
Cox began sprinting competitively aged 15 and went on to run 100m in under 12 seconds.
She was also bidding for a place on the GB bob skeleton winter sports programme before illness struck.
A stroke aged 23 led to her being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. But despite the MS affecting her movement, especially down the right side of her body, her ability to run fast remained.
She returned to the track, also discovered a flair for cycling, and pleaded to be part of both squads.
Cox now splits her time between the Manchester Velodrome, where she is based with the rest of the GB Para-cycling squad, and her athletics training in Leeds.
In Rio, she became the first British Paralympian since Isabel Barr (later Newstead) in 1988 to win medals in two separate sports at the same Games, and the first since Barr in 1984 to win golds in different sports.
What she said: “I have only been doing it a year and a half and being on top of the world is amazing.”
Zoe McCartney: “Competing in two separate events, winning two golds, a silver and a bronze medal and setting two new world records. Inspiring.”
Dan Quinton: “Kadeena Cox deserves recognition. She did wonders in Rio in both events.”
Stacey Ellis: “Would be great if she won. Amazing achievement.”
Sports Personality record: First nomination. No Paralympian has won the main award, though wheelchair racer David Weir was fifth in 2012.
Cycling is booming – many people are getting on a bike for the first time, and those who already cycle are cycling more and more. It’s a revolution.
Visit the Get Inspired website to find out more on how to get into cycling.
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