Paralympic cycling sensation David Nicholas has done it again, this time winning Gold in the C3 3000 meter pursuit in Rio.
Just 24-years-old, David has already accumulated pages of palmares including Gold in the C3 Time Trial in London 2012 Paralympics, three para-cycling World Champion rainbow jerseys and numerous national titles. He has also been awarded an Order of Australia Medal and presented with the symbolic keys to his home region of the Whitsundays in Queensland.
In qualifying for the final in Rio he broke the Paralympic Games record with a personal best time of 3:32.336. This put him into a gold medal race against 2016 World Champion Joseph Berenyi.
“He got me by two tenths of a second in Italy at the the Worlds so I wanted to get him even more,” said Nicholas who works as an IT Support Officer For the Whitsunday Regional Council.
“I didn’t want to be second to him again so I was super motivated for the final and I knew it was going to be a battle between us. In the back of my mind I hoped I had a bit left in the tank for the last kilometre or so,” said Nicholas.
“So when the call came to lift over the last few laps I tried to empty the tank and hoped it was enough to get him. I have worked very hard since London with every aspect of my training so I was hoping to improve on that but I never thought it would be a gold medal and a Paralympic Record – I am just speechless.”
“My favourite memory of today is riding around the velodrome with the Australian flag,” he added.
David gave a special thanks to his long-time coach Nick Formosa saying the pair share a special bond.
“He is probably like no other coach because he is a mate and he has been with me every step of the way,” said Nicholas. “Early last year when I had pneumonia and was in ICU in Mackay he came up to visit me from Brisbane and that to me was one of many special moments I have had with him and today is one more. I also want to thank everyone that supports and helps me in any way.”
Nicholas will be back on the track on Sunday in the team sprint event before turning his attention his attention to the road race and time trial.
“I won the gold medal in the road time trial in London so I will be really trying for that one too,” said Nicholas.
“The win today does lessen the pressure for now, but by next week I will probably feel the pressure again but I know I just have to have fun.”