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Paratriathlon set for British double-header with 50 days to Volvo 2022 WTPS Swansea

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Oscar Kelly and Charlie Harding are relishing the prospect of showing a home crowd what they can do in Britain's first-ever standalone World Triathlon Para Series event just a week after representing England at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games.

Today marks 50 days until Volvo 2022 World Triathlon Para Series Swansea, which will be taking place in the city on August 6. 

Kelly, who has enjoyed a meteoric ascent since taking up the sport five years ago, believes the occasion has the ability to inspire a generation of para-athletes and said: “I’m super excited to be racing.

“It’s the first Para World Series that’s not got anything else around it, so it’ll be a little bit different and it'll be super exciting to see friends and family there. 

“People usually come and see us as just an event that’s on and don’t really realise what level we race at, but hopefully we’ll have massive crowds out there cheering us on. 

“Hopefully it will open doors to younger international athletes as well [because] at the end of the day that’s who we want to try and inspire.”

The 21-year-old, aided by his friend and guide Charlie Harding, finished second in his first ever World Cup event before becoming British champion in his B3 classification. 

The Londoner topped off his debut campaign with an impressive sixth place finish in the World Paratriathlon Championships last year. 

Harding, 19, who is an aspiring athlete himself, added: “Para sports are in the spotlight and the focus is fully on that, which is really going to lift the competition within paratriathlon especially. 

“You can already see that the younger generations are coming forward and I think paratriathlon is going to move much more in line with non-disabled triathlons.

“For them to watch it on TV will be really good.”

Before Kelly and Harding can turn their attention to the showpiece, they have a home Commonwealth Games to contend with. 

The duo are delighted to have earned selection for Team England and share a desire for a passionate home support in Birmingham. 

Kelly said: “Getting selected for the Commonwealth Games after our first year of international racing was magical. 

“We will hopefully be hearing a lot more people cheering us on, being a British crowd - we’re a country that loves sports so I’m hoping we’ll have massive crowds out there.

“When you’re right on the edge hearing someone shout your name, even if you don’t know who they are it just really gives you that last little push.”

Harding added: “It won’t just be me shouting at Oscar! It will be the whole crowd, so he should be able to run really fast.”

With a little over a month to go until the landmark event in South Wales, anticipation is building for what the series could do for the world of para sports.

VOLVO 2022 WTPS SWANSEA

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