stuart wood bronze medal

Bunbury-based canoeist Stuart Wood has secured his placed in the GB Para-canoe team for the Tokyo Games.

Wood will be the sole Paralympic debutant and it crowns a fine season for the VL3 athlete.

He won the European Championships in 2019 and then put himself firmly in contention for a seat on the plane by winning all three of the men’s VL3 200m races in Nottingham earlier this year.

He is among an eight-strong British Para-canoe team for the Tokyo Games.

“I’m really happy to have been selected after tight racing and a really tough year for everyone,” Wood told BBC Sport.

“My last race was the test event in Tokyo and it feels like such a long time since we’ve raced, so I’m looking forward to getting out there and racing internationally again on the biggest stage.”

Having joined British Canoeing’s world class programme in 2019, Wood wasted no time in making his mark with world bronze and European gold, ahead of the lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.

But with more time to focus on the finer details alongside girlfriend and fellow para canoeist Lindsay Thorpe due to the absence of competition, the former University of Bath student believes he is in the form of his life ahead of a crucial few months.

Back in April, he said: “The Paralympics is what we all train for, and especially with what’s gone on in the world over the last 12 months I’m sure it’s going to be particularly special.

“It’s all about carrying this form forwards, now.

“The one thing about not having competed internationally for so long is that we don’t know where the rest of the world is at in terms of their progress.

“We’ll find that out soon enough, but I do think our high level of national competition should stand us in good stead because we’ve all been able to consistently push each other.”

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