Adopting the legendary anthem ‘London’s Calling’ by iconic UK band ‘The Clash’ as the Cambodian theme song for the London 2012 Paralympic Games, the CNVLD is gearing up to send the first ever Cambodian wheelchair racing athlete to the London Games.
CNVLD Secretary General Chris Minko announced this week that “Through cooperation with the National Paralympic Committee of Cambodia and the Government of the Kingdom of Cambodia, the CNVLD has been tasked with providing the training and entry requirements necessary for ensuring the participation of a Cambodian Wheelchair Racing Athlete for the first time ever in the Paralympic Games.”
As the run-up for the London 2012 Paralympic Games heats up, Cambodian Male National Wheelchair Racing Champion since 2006, Van Vun, is already dedicated to his task and is in training with his team mates for the 1st Round of the ANZ Royal CNVLD Wheelie Grand Prix scheduled for 25th April 2009.
As the first step in the formal preparations for a three year intensive training programme, the CNVLD, in cooperation with Victoria Wheelchair Sport, hopes to send Van Vun to participate in a week long Paralympic athlete’s training camp in Geelong, Australia with some of the world’s leading athletes and coaches. After completing the training camp, Vun will then travel to Sydney where he will compete in the Sydney Marathon.
Mr Van Vun – Cambodian National Champion – Wheelchair Racing
On his return to Cambodia, Van Vun will begin an intensive training programme in preparation for further international competitions prior to qualification for the 2012 Games.
Currently only fractions away from Paralympic qualification times over a number of distances while racing in the Cambodian produced Angkor II, Vun’s performances in international standard racing chairs will undoubtedly bring him up to world standard. The aim is to see Cambodia’s first ever Paralympic medal brought home around Vun’s neck.
Van Vun will be assisted in his quest for Paralympic qualification and a good result by UK citizen Neil Wilford who has been officially appointed as CNVLD London 2012 Project Coordinator and Racing Wheelchair Coach/Mentor to Van Vun.
Secretary General Chris Minko has great confidence in the appointment stating that “Having played a central role in the development of the Cambodian Wheelchair Racing Programme since its inception in 2005 and the 15 subsequent events, Neil is perfectly positioned as a UK citizen to fulfil the historic objective of assisting Van Vun to become not only the first ever Cambodian wheelchair racing athlete to qualify for the Paralympic Games but also achieve a good result and compete with pride and dignity. In the immediate future, the CNVLD also has the firm objective of establishing a strong cooperative working dialogue and relationship with the UK.”
After 9 years of successful international competition, the Cambodian National Standing Volleyball team are currently ranked #3 in the World and the CNVLD is confident that through its innovative and determined sports development programme, a similar result can be achieved with the wheelchair racing programme which is exclusively sponsored by ANZ Royal Bank, the acknowledged leaders of Corporate Social Responsibility in Cambodia.
The CNVLD also has two entries showcasing the ANZ Royal CNVLD Wheelie Grand Prix in ‘Beyond Sport’, the highly prestigious international sports competition chaired by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and raising awareness of sports development programmes in the run-up to the London Games.
So with ‘London Calling’, the CNVLD urges its supporters all over the world to get behind Van Vun as he aims to place Cambodia firmly on the international sporting stage!
The CNVLD and Van Vun:
Aiming to Bring Cambodia’s First Paralympic Wheelchair Racing Medal Home!