Witney News - Grant helps disabled athlete's world champ. bid

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Grant helps disabled athlete's world champ. bid

A West Oxfordshire man is being supported by West Oxfordshire District Council in his quest to become the first blind athlete to represent Great Britain in a World Triathlon championship event.

A 250 Sports Achievement Award from West Oxfordshire District Council completes the funding Graham Kiff needs to compete in the World Championship event in Hamburg next month (September). The money will go towards equipment fees as new items are essential to keep his performance levels at international standard.

Registered blind, Graham Kiff, aged 39, of Gordon Way, has been training for the world championships alongside his guide, Dennis Murphy, also from Witney. Most of their training is done at the council-owned Windrush Leisure Centre, Witney.

Cllr Hilary Biles, Cabinet Member for Leisure and Tourism said, "The Council is keen to assist people of all abilities and is very pleased to be supporting Graham's bid. To be competing at world championship level is in itself a fantastic achievement, but we are doubly proud as Graham will also be making sporting history as the first blind British athlete participating in this event. Graham is a wonderful role model for everyone and we wish him every success in the championships in September."

Graham Kiff said "Without the Council's grant I simply would not be going to Hamburg so I hope I can repay their support by doing well there. Receiving the award encouraged me a lot and I hope publicity about it will demonstrate to other disabled athletes in West Oxfordshire that they too can apply locally for financial assistance which could help them improve their performances."

Graham's completed his first full triathlon at St Dunstan's Brighton in 3 hours 6 minutes.

Graham Kiff's award was part of the Sports and Arts Achievers Award scheme. for sports and arts deadline for applications for the next round of awards is the 27th September.

For further information about these awards contact Leisure and Tourism on 01993 861080.

Posted : 23/08/2007 18:54:12

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