Special Olympics 2019: Cyclist Abhishek Gogoi bounces back from accident to clinch silver

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Abhishek Gogoi, a 19-year-old cyclist from Guwahati, Assam did not let injuries bog him down and even after incurring injuries in his first race at his first-ever Special Olympics World Games, he came back to the competition ground and bagged a silver medal. Abhishek stood on the podium along with his Bharat teammates Mani Singh and Khalid Bellary and India shone in the 10K Road Race.

While Abhishek clinched the silver medal, Mani won the 10K Road Race to get gold and Khalid Bellary finished just behind Abhishek to bag the bronze.

On Sunday, Abhishek took a bad fall on the windy, sloping course during another race after another cyclist fell in front of him and could not finish on the podium.

“He was so disappointed,” Head Cycling coach Dr. Rajinder Nahata said. “He never complained about the injury. But he felt that his chances of winning a medal were remote now. That depressed him!”

However, Abhishek was helped by his coach and people around him and came back on track for the 10K Road Race in order to prove his mettle.

Special Olympics 2019: Abhishek Gogoi with Bharat coach Harman Gill. (Special Olympics Photo)

He did prove his mettle thereafter as he finished with a timing of 19:20.20 at the second place on another windy day at a course where sand was getting into the athlete’s eyes.

Abhishek was brimming with happiness after bagging the silver medal. However, the road to silver was not an an easy one.

After the fall on Sunday, Abhishek first had to give a formal consent for competing in 10K Road Race despite the injuries he had incurred after which a doctor had to clear him for competing.

He received the all-clear and shone out on the track.

Here is Abhishek’s story:

Abhishek was just a few months old when he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy, due to complications from jaundice. His father died of cancer when he was 11 and since then, it is Abhishek’s mother who has been supporting him.

Basic physical activity helped Abhishek in gaining some body control but Abhishek used to train on borrowed cycles, because his family could not afford to give him one.

A loyal supporter though started a crowdfunding campaign to get Abhishek his own cycle and some basic equipment. The crowdfunding took time but Abhishek now owns a cycle and a few equipment – all of which has helped him train even harder.

Abhishek is a student at Indira Gandhi National Open University and plans of higher studies. He dreams to be a videographer and film-maker like his father.

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