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PARALYMPICS: Baker's delight at double gold
10:00am Tuesday 4th September 2012 in Sport
Dressage star Natasha Baker, who trains at Milton-under-Wychwood, admitted that winning her second Paralympic gold medal at London 2012 was beyond her wildest dreams, writes STUART WEIR.
The 22-year-old added gold in the Grade 2 freestyle yesterday to the individual championship she won on Saturday in the competition for athletes with reasonable balance and abdominal contral, including amputees.
Her score of 82.800 per cent on Cabral was a personal best and a Paralympic record.
Germany’s Britta Napel was second – as she had been on Saturday – with a score of 77.400 per cent.
Baker said: “When I said in 2000 after watching Lee Pearson compete in Sydney, that I wanted to compete in the Parlympics myself and win a gold medal, I never imagined that I would get two gold medals in my first Paralympic games and that it would be in London.”
Paying tribute to the late Ken Barnsley, who had arranged the music, she explained that it was perfect for her horse.
“He is sensitive and elegant and the harmony between him and me is great,” she added.
Remarkably her high score was achieved despite a problem with her routine as she revealed she had got well behind the music at one point and had had to improvise and cut a corner to catch up.
Baker, who lives on the outskirts of London, said she had loved every minute of the Paralympic experience.
“I have developed as a rider and as a person,” she added. “In fact I feel ancient after the past six days.”
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