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Interviews with Mark Ledo and Rico Morneau at the 2010 Paracycling Worlds

by John Symon

August 21, 2010 (Baie-Comeau, QC) – We caught up with Canada’s Mark Ledo, who won bronze in the men’s 46.5km H3 road race on Saturday morning along with his coach, Peter Lawless – this was Ledo’s first Paracycling Worlds. We also talked with Rico Morneau at the Canadian team tent after the men’s 46.5km H2 (hand cycling) road race.

Interview with Mark Ledo

Congratulations on your bronze medal – how are you feeling?
ML: I feel pretty good

Tell us about yourself ?
ML: I’m 33 and come from Maple, Ontario.
Lawless: I wonder if your readers know Mark’s background.

We’d like to know more – it sounds like you’ve got something interesting to add.
Lawless: Mark did pretty well today, finishing third in the world after only nine months of training in this sport. He previously competed at the 2008 Beijing Paralympics as a wheelchair athlete in both the marathon and the 5,000m events, but injured his hand last year. In wheelchair races you really have to punch the wheels and that became impossible, so Mark took up hand cycling instead.

Did his previous experience with wheelchair racing give Mark an advantage?
Lawless: I guess that just having a great aerobic base and a big engine is a good thing to have in handcycling.

Mark when is your next event?
ML: I might be in Sunday’s relay, but they haven’t made the team selection yet.

Thanks to both of you and good luck – we hope you make the relay selection.
ML: Thanks

Interview with Rico Morneau

Hi Rico how did the race go?
Rico Morneau: I`m finished. That was like a 45km time trial. And my gear shifter broke before the last 11km lap meaning I had to go up the St. George hill with no gears.

Where did you finish in the pack?
RM: I am not sure but it wasn`t on the podium. There were guys in front of me and there were guys behind – I was in the middle somewhere in nowhere land. (Morneau placed 13th)

Was it was a tough course?
RM: It is a hilly course that favours lightweight cyclists. The guy who beat me here, Hans Frel, well I beat him on the flat in Switzerland.

Do you know if you`re in Sunday`s relay race?
RM: Maybe you want to ask coach Eric Van Den Eynde about that, but I don’t think I will be on the team. I think it will be two Marks and a Robert.

What do you think of the Baie Comeau World Championships?
RM: They`re pretty good considering that organizers only had six months to put all this together. As mentioned, the course is better suited to lightweights who are good climbers. That makes it tough for me, used to finishing in the top five but I have to be content with the top dozen or so here. But the crowds are very encouraging, especially for the Canadian paracyclists.

What`s next for Rico Morneau?
RM: A one week vacation, I hope. And then I am hoping to do at least one more race this year. Perhaps something in Germany this October, but I haven`t picked the race yet.

Thanks, Rico. Good luck with everything.
RM: Thank you.

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