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First Time Sprinters Chadwick and Espinoza Secure Bronze in Epic Showdown

by Annemarie Blanco

Hannah Chadwick and Skyler Epinoza pose for photo with bronze medals. (Photo by Casey Gibson)

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – A packed UK crowd roared as Americans Hannah Chadwick (El Cerrito, California) and pilot Skyler Espinoza (Freeport, Maine) claimed their first career medal on the international stage as a pair in the WB sprint. A race they weren’t originally scheduled to compete in, the third-place finish was even more incredible since it was the only sprint race they’ve done together – ever.

The U.S. women along with the British team, who went on to win gold, also made history as the only time at a world championship where both finals went on to the decider. After taking the second heat in style, it was an epic final showdown beating their Italian opponents by .033 seconds.

“I feel very proud of us, it’s our first sprint race together at worlds,” said Chadwick. “I’m very tired but super excited for us. I didn’t have any expectations that we were going to win but knew we were going to do well because we train really hard together so my goal was to just have a great race.”

In his final track competition of the event, 2022 world championship medalist John Terrell (Converse, Texas) returned to the velodrome in an intense men’s C4 scratch race. With two competitors taking an early attack in the first few laps, Terrell spent much of the first half of the 60-lap race working solo attempting to close the gap. After a late crash by a Belgian competitor, riders were forced to a reset of the last nine laps. Terrell managed to say with the front of the second pack as he snagged a top ten finish. He will continue his 2023 world championship podium quest as a member of the road cycling team early next week.

“What was going through my mind was dang they just got across super easy,” said Terrell. “Then I thought, I wonder if they will let me do the same thing. I gave it a go and the field responded fast. I saw the pack inside but just couldn’t close the gap and eventually ran out of gas. I stayed in, was able to pull up and not get lapped.”

Terrell spoke to his tactics on not getting frazzled by the crash but rather using it as a time to reset. “The main thing is considering when you see the crash, avoiding it and then knowing that you’re coming back around,” he said. “[I had to] be mindful, letting up a bit so that if someone is on still on track, you’re not causing an additional one. I used that moment to gather myself and rather than worry, just reset and ground.”

Two days after winning bronze in the women’s C4 scratch, Paralympian Samantha Bosco (Claremont, California) secured an early finals spot in this morning’s WC4 500m time trial qualification. The first competitor to compete in the evening, Bosco placed sixth with two more chances at the track podium in Monday’s individual pursuit finals and final omnium component – the 200m time trial.

Alongside Bosco in the qualification round was fellow C4 racer Shawn Morelli (Meadville, Pennsylvania) who placed ninth in the 500m time trial. Morelli will compete in Monday’s WC4 200m time trial before transitioning over to Dumfries & Galloway to prepare for the road competition.
 
Fresh off the MC3 scratch race last night, there was little rest for three-time Paralympian Joe Berenyi (Aurora, Illinois) who reappeared at the velodrome in the morning’s lineup snagging an impressive top four finish in the MC3 omnium 200-meter time trial. Berenyi will return for the last day of track cycling on Aug. 8 as a member of Tuesday’s team sprint.

Michael Stephens (Colorado Springs, Colorado) alongside pilot Joe Christiansen (Lyons, Colorado) fought hard in the MB sprint qualification making it to the quarterfinals. The duo will compete again on Monday to race in the minor finals.

Team USA returns to the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome beginning at 1 p.m. local time on Monday, Aug. 7 for the penultimate day of competition. For live updates and results, follow U.S. Paralympics Cycling on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

For media requests and photo inquiries, please contact Annemarie Blanco at Annemarie.Blanco@usopc.org.

Team USA Medals - August 6

BRONZE
Hannah Chadwick, Skyler Espinoza - WB Sprint 

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