Great Britain and Australia can look back at last week's Paracycling Road World Cup in Sydney with satisfaction, as their preparations for London continue. In addition, the pricing structures for the London 2012 Paralympic Games have been announced.
USA took the overall World Cup team win, with eight gold medals, two silvers and five bronzes, while Great Britain's team of just nine riders took home ten medals - six golds, three silvers and a bronze. Italy finished in third spot, with five golds out of twenty medals.
One of the most impressive performances of the Cup had to be World and Paralympic Champion Sarah Storey (Great Britain), who won her C5 category Road Race over three minutes ahead of the USA's Greta Neimanas and Australian Claire MacLean. Storey, who also won the time trial event, was one of 13 riders to win the double gold across her road race and time trial.
Chris Furber, Great Britain's Para-Cycling Coach, said on the British Cycling website: "We have seen some strong performances from our riders in the last few days and it's particularly pleasing to see Karen Darke [H2 Handcycling] win two silvers and the new pairing of Lora Turnham and Fiona Duncan [tandem] on podium against a world class field.
"We have exceeded our qualification points target for both men and women, which puts us in a good place ahead of the second round of the event in Spain next month, where competition will be even tougher."
Cycling Australia Para-cycling Performance Director Peter Day was pleased with his team's performance on home ground, where they came fourth in the team competition, with five golds out of sixteen medals.
"I'm happy with how we're placed so far and I'm really comfortable with the event itself so far," he said on the Cycling Australia website. "For some of the riders, it is the first international experience of any type so I think a lot of the benefit for us will be in the diagnosis afterwards of the squad by individual.
"I think we're in a pretty good place just at the moment. For the handcycling side of things, it's a real intiative that we have taken on in the Para-cycling program. That's a journey in motion so we have to see what happens because we're not expecting too much for about two to four years in real terms. But I think we could get a surprise."
Meanwhile, ticket prices have been revealed for the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Although many of the tickets will be sold on 'open ticket' day passes, with spectators being able to move between events and sports, cycling is expected to be one of the most popular events, with open access to the road races and time trials. Velodrome tickets are meanwhile sold on reserved seating only.
The track cycling (provisionally August 30-September 2) will be priced at £10, £20 and £30 for the morning sessions and £20, £30 and £45 for the evening sessions,while the road cycling (provisionally September 5-8) will mostly be open access around the road course, but there will be some reserved seats for £10.
The full details of the 2012 Paralympic pricing and provisional time table are available on the official website and tickets will go on sale in September 2011.