PARALYMPICS LONDON 2012: Kappes insists British rivalry with Fachie is only friendly
ANTHONY Kappes insists his rivalry with British team-mate Neil Fachie is only friendly - until they get onto the cycling track.
HOPEFUL: Craig McLean and Anthony Kappes are favourites for cycling tandem gold at the London 2012 Paralympics
World number one Kappes is seeking to defend his two tandem golds from the Beijing Paralympics alongside new pilot Craig MacLean, who won team sprint silver with Chris Hoy at the Sydney Olympics.
While chief rival Fachie will ride alongside Barney Storey, Kappes's partner four years ago.
“Obviously the ranking does give you confidence, because you know what you are capable of,” said Kappes, who also worked with 2000 Olympic individual pursuit champion Jason Queally in the build-up to the Games.
“But you have to be very careful not to let any sort of complacency creep in, so we are very aware of the tandems that are chasing us.
“Of course there is a rivalry, but it is on the track. This is one of the features, in fact a very nice feature, of the tandems.
“I say there are two places: on the track and off the track, and we behave accordingly. Of course, there is a rivalry but it is not handbags at dawn, it is on the track.”
However, Kappes is cautious about labelling his event as an internal British team battle, with rivals from Holland, Italy and Spain also among his rivals.
“They are all really quite good, and they are relatively new pairings as well, so their progress will have been significant,” he added.
“On the sprint day especially there could be some really good racing going on.
“Expectations and form are very difficult because it comes down to the event on the day. We are in good form. We know if we put it all together well on the day we can be right up there, but anything beyond that is just tempting fate.”
© Sportsbeat 2012