News

Update from Junior Ambassador Thomas Talbot

Thomas with his new StormRunner

We were delighted to hear that our inspirational Junior Ambassador, Thomas Talbot, has had a fantastic season with his new StormRunner, and really done himself proud. As you will see, he is gaining personal bests and great results across different distances showing himself to be a very versatile athlete. With his talent and huge determination, Thomas is really becoming a RaceRunning force to be reckoned with and we’ve no doubt he has a very exciting future. Go Thomas!

A summary of his season so far:

  • September 2018 – National CP Sport Athletics RR2 U16 Male Champion – 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m
  • November 2018 – Selected to British Athletics RaceRunning Paralympic Development Academy.
  • April 2019 – broke the Under 16 RR2 Male 100m World Record. 
  • He then bettered that time at Stoke Mandeville in May but it didn’t count as no electronic timing.
  • May 2019 – Silver medallist in combined RR2/RR3 100m and 200m at the East Midlands Disability Athletics Championships
  • June 2019 – established a new Under 16 RR2 1500m World Record in York – the first athlete in the world at this age in that class to do so.
  • June 2019 –  Bronze medallist at the 100m and 400m combined RR2/RR3 Northern Championships.
  • July 2019 – National Junior Athletics Champion – RR2 Male – 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m and winner of the Lions International Endeavour Trophy at the championships.
  • July 2019 – Bronze Medallist at the England Athletics National Disability Championships for RR2/RR3 combined 100m. Silver medallist at the same event for the RR2/RR3 combined 200m.
  • August 2019 – Newham Parallel Success Meet – pb in the 400m 
  • September 7th / 8th – British Wheelchair Athletics Association Grand Prix – Stoke Mandeville – broke the 100m Males U16 100m World Record and ran a pb in his 400m twice over the weekend.
  • This season he has also run a pb in his 200m twice and he is just a second off the 200m world record at the moment.

Thomas will also have competed at the CP National Athletics championships at the end of September by now and we’ll let you know how he got on.

There’s no rest for such a dedicated athlete though as he will now be into his winter season training again…

Thomas in action with his StormRunner
Thomas in action with his StormRunner
Thomas in the run in to the line on his way to breaking the World Record
Thomas in the run in to the line on his way to breaking the World Record

Huge congratulations to Thomas on such a fantastic season. We are so proud to have him as our first Junior Ambassador and will really look forward to seeing what 2020 will bring…

Thomas – My Sporting Journey Part 9

Here is the 9th and final part of our young Bader Grant Recipient of the Month, Thomas Talbot’s Sporting Journey. As the observant amongst you will have noticed, Thomas’s month has run on longer than most(!) as I wanted to make the most of his amazing contribution to the Website. Despite training and competing nationally and internationally (including the CPISRA World Games in Spain) throughout the year and undergoing yet another operation, Thomas has heroically provided us with this inspiring and very enlightening glimpse into the life of a very committed and gutsy young athlete with very big dreams. We couldn’t be more proud of Thomas or more delighted that, through sheer hard work and determination, those dreams get ever closer to fulfilment. 

Thomas’s success couldn’t be more deserved. You’ve certainly done all at the DBF proud, Thomas!

We hope that 2019 will be as successful a year for him as 2018 was and wish him the very best of success ongoing. Remember the name – Thomas is already a RaceRunning force to be reckoned with and we’ve no doubt he’s going to go all the way!

Read on for Part 9 of Thomas’s Sporting Journey…

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The heat is building and so is the pressure!

Well I wished for it to get a little warmer to train and but I didn’t imagine it was going to get this hot. At least it is good training for Spain. Since my competition in June in Gloucester I have been training hard at my club Lincoln Wellington Athletics Club building up to my next competition.

We travel all over the country and my next challenge saw me compete in my very first Typhoo National Junior championships in Coventry – the home to Coventry Godiva Club. The competition was over two days and it was so hot on the track. On the first day I had the 800m, 400m and the 100m. RaceRunning was included for the first time and on the first day I had the 800m, 400m and the 100m! I was close to my Pb on my 100m and 400m and took over 6 seconds off my 800m Pb. Oh and I won 3 golds! On the second day I was also close to my 200m pb and won another gold medal. 4 golds and a pb – not bad for a weekend on the track!

 

Image curtesy of Nick Stevens
Image courtesy of Nick Stevens

 

 

On July 17th I ran another 3k road race as good CV training at Lincoln Wellington Ac. I took over 20 seconds off my 3k pb so I was really pleased with that.

As the month has gone on, my training has focused on developing my speed in preparation for a special race in Manchester. For the first time ever RaceRunning was also included in the England Athletics / CAU Disability Championships. I competed in the 100m and made the final and won a bronze medals with a new pb time.

    

As the month of July comes to an end my full focus turns to the CPISRA World Games in Spain. I am so honoured to be representing Team CP England and I’m really looking forward to representing my country again.

I’m going to be racing against athletes much older and stronger than me so I’m going to try to run the best races I can, aim for pbs and do my family and country proud.

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We’re hoping that when Thomas has recovered from his recent operation (and we’re sure you’ll join us in wishing him a speedy journey back to full spec) he will send us a report on his experiences at the World Games where he did phenomenally well representing his country against very stiff opposition. Watch this space…!

I will also put all parts of Thomas’s Sporting Journey into one document for easy reading and downloading. Ditto!

In the meantime you can see *previous posts from Thomas and find links to his fundraising page by following the link: /?s=Thomas+Talbot&from=dbf

(*NB Part 8 of the Journey hasn’t made it to the archives yet and can be found here: /bader-grants-news/thomas-my-sporting-journey-part-8)

Click on the link if you’d like to download Part 9 of Thomas’s Sporting Journey as a pdf: /wp-content/uploads/2018/10/TT-My-Sporting-Journey-9.pdf

Part 3 of Junior Bader Grant Recipient of the Month, Thomas Talbot’s, Sporting Journey

Herewith the 3rd instalment of Thomas Talbot’s sporting journey. Our first Junior Bader Grant Recipient of the Month, Thomas was born with cerebral palsy but, showing the Bader spirit in spades as you will see from this latest report, Thomas pursues success as a RaceRunner with a courage and determination that makes him a worthy and thoroughly inspirational BGRotM.


My Sporting Journey Part 3

Cerebral palsy and sport – it doesn’t always go your way!

When I got back from Denmark, the very next week I had to have Botox operations on my legs to help let them stretch a bit more again as they were so tight. They also found some problems with my hip.

In October 2016 I got some really bad news that I needed surgery on my hip as the hip was half in and half out. It is common with children with cp that their hip sockets don’t always form properly as they learn to walk much later than abled bodied kids.  Even so it was not the news I wanted.

In January 2017 I had hip re-construction surgery at Sheffield Children’s Hospital and I spent my 13th birthday in hospital. Not the best way to become a teenager!

 

I was in a hip spica for 7 weeks. After the spica came off, I had to have lots of physio! It took me until May 2017 to go back to school whilst having to learn to walk all over again. This was because they had to take quite abit of bone from my thigh to graft into my hip and I now have quite a leg length difference between my left and right legs. I got a Rotary Child of Courage Award whilst I was recovering too! I dreamt I would walk again and I promised myself I would get back on my RaceRunner. By July 2017 I was back on my feet and moving around!

 

By August 2017 I was back on my RaceRunner using it for walking therapy. It was a struggle and we had to adapt how I ran with a built up shoe. Quietly we trained!

In late September 2017 I returned to the track and I won the Cerebral Palsy Sport Under 14
National CP Championships for 100m, 200m, 400m & 800m and I was close to my PBs too!

 

  

All the hard work to fight back to fitness has been worth it as I found out in late October 2017 that I have been selected to represent England at the CPISRA World Games in Spain in August 2018. So the hard work starts.

I have been training hard through the winter… it has been cold… it has been wet… it has been snowy!


Useful Links: (these will open in separate tabs)

Click on the link to download a pdf which can be printed or saved of the original document of Thomas’s My Sporting Journey Part 3

You can look forward to Part 4 of Thomas’s Sporting Journey, which will follow shortly…

Meet our new Bader Grant Recipient of the Month – Thomas Talbot!

I am so proud to introduce our new Bader Grant Recipient of the Month, Thomas Talbot. Thomas is our very worthy first Junior Bader Grant Recipient of the Month.

Thomas has almost made a profession of surprising the medical profession since his cerebral palsy was diagnosed when he was just over a year old and he wasn’t expected to walk or talk. He has certainly proved them wrong on both counts as you will see when you read his reports…. Not only can he walk but, since acquiring his first RaceRunner, he is working his way up through the ranks as a runner and has a string of wins under his belt.

Thomas’s success is absolutely deserved. He is an extraordinarily determined and committed athlete with the Bader spirit in spades. We are delighted to have been able to support him on his sporting journey.

You’re in for a treat; Thomas will be sending regular updates during his time as BGRotM and they are wonderful! I shall be posting them at regular intervals so be sure to keep checking in!

Read on for Part One of Thomas’s Sporting Story. Enjoy!


Thomas – My Sporting Story –

Part One – Growing Up with cerebral palsy

Hi my name is Thomas and I am really excited to be able to tell you a little bit of my story of how I became involved with the brilliant Douglas Bader Foundation and how they have really helped me in my sport.

I have cerebral palsy diaplegia which means I have permanent brain damage caused at birth. I know that may sound scary to a lot of people – it really means that my legs don’t work very well.

I was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when I was 13 months old and the doctors told my Mum and Dad that I would never walk or talk… well they got that very wrong as I can talk for England!

You may wonder what cerebral palsy actually is? It is permanent brain damage and is often caused by lack of oxygen before, at or after birth. Despite what people say there is no cure!

Cerebral palsy affect people in different ways – some more severe than others. The type of cerebral palsy I have means that it affects both my legs, my right arm and a little impact on my sight.

I can’t walk independently and I have a great piece of kit called a kaye walker to help me get around each day. I sometimes have to use a wheelchair for longer distances and I also wears splints every day to help support my legs as I can be quite wobbly sometimes. I didn’t learn to walk until I was 4 when I got my first Kaye walker – it was quite shiny but I could really move on it once I got the hang of it!

 My Dad is in the RAF and we moved to Shropshire when I was 18 months. My physio in Shropshire referred me to hippo therapy – which is riding therapy on a horse to help build my core strength. It was the first sport I tried and I loved doing it especially when it came to riding the horses!

My physio also encouraged me to use a tricycle to build up my strength. I just thought it was fun! We came back home to Lincolnshire in 2011 when Dad was posted back. It took a long time to sort out my new physio support and the trikes really helped in the meantime to build my leg strength up.

Getting into Different Sports

I have always loved sport and I adore football and Manchester United but never thought I would be able to play as I use a Frame. I was always the boy that was left on the side lines or put in goal or the last to be picked for a team and would often get upset. Then I got involved in CP Sport and played Frame Football for the first time and I got to play Frame Football at St George’s Park and Aston Villa! I can’t play now because of my knees, hips and leg issues.


Part 2 of Thomas’s story will follow.

Click on the link to download a pdf which can be printed or saved of the original document of Thomas’s My Sporting Journey Part 1