Golden girl Kadeena Cox, crowned Paralympic Champion in both athletics and cycling on her Paralympic debut, was chosen as flagbearer for Great Britain at the Rio 2016 Closing Ceremony.
As flagbearer Cox represented one of the most successful British Paralympic teams in history. The team has achieved the most gold medals by a British team since 1988, surpassing there medal target for the games.
Amongst the team there have been numerous ‘stand-out’ performances, but Cox’s achievements have been particularly exceptional.
Cox raced into the record books when she became the first British Paralympian since 1984 to top the podium in two different sports at the same Games. She initially struck gold in the C4/5 500m time trial in the velodrome before claiming victory in the T38 400m in the Olympic Stadium, setting a new world record in the process. Cox also started her quest for medals on the track with an impressive bronze in the T38 100m and ended it by playing a crucial role in winning silver as part of the women’s T35 – T38 4 x 100m relay.
“It was a bit of surprise to be told that I would be flagbearer for the team. I’m really grateful that the team thought that I was good enough for this honour, given the strength of performances across all the athletes [in ParalympicsGB] this time around. I’ve just been doing my own thing as an athlete, preparing and racing and I never thought of being flagbearer.
“It’s a great feeling to know that I’ll be standing at the front of such an exceptional group of athletes from GB, to represent what has been such a successful and high-achieving team.
“I only originally expected just to get to Rio, let alone win medals, so to do this is the icing on the cake of an amazing Games. I couldn’t have imagined this in my wildest dreams. To do something as special as carrying the flag is incredible.”
The choice of Kadeena as flagbearer was made by the Senior Leadership team, led by the Chef de Mission.
Penny Briscoe MBE, ParalympicsGB Chef de Mission, said:
“Kadeena’s achievements in Rio have been absolutely remarkable, and she is the perfect choice to be our flagbearer. To strike gold in two sports is no mean feat, and it pays tribute to her talent, pride and determination and also the work of British Athletics and British Cycling, with the support of National Lottery funding, to help her achieve and surpass her goals.
“As the Games draw to a close we can begin to reflect on the exceptional performances of our athletes and this incredible medal haul. The Closing Ceremony is the perfect way to kick off the celebrations for this record breaking team. I am so proud of each and every member of the team.”