Jody Cundy earns his stripes by retaining 2016 UCI Para-Cycling Track World Championships title

Jody Cundy was on top of the world again in Italy this evening. Picture: NICK POTTS/PA WIRE

Jody Cundy was on top of the world again in Italy this evening. Picture: NICK POTTS/PA WIRE - Credit: PA

Kilo king Jody Cundy sent out a statement of intent to his Paralympic rivals by defending his world title for the third year in a row.

The 37-year-old layed down a marker for September's Rio Games this evening by winning the C4 1km time trial (kilo) at the 2016 UCI Para-Cycling Track World Championships in Italy.

Cundy's time of one minute and four seconds (1:04:654) was fast enough to see him top the podium once again and continue his phenomenal unbeaten record in the discipline.

The Walpole St Andrew, near Wisbech, raised star wrote on Twitter: 'One year since my last kilo, it doesn't get any easier!

'So happy to win and keep hold of the rainbow stripes (winner's jersey) ahead of Rio.

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'There's something a bit special about pulling on this jersey, don't think I'll ever tire of it.'

The below-knee amputee, a former multiple world-champion swimmer, has now won the kilo at the UCI's flagship event on eight occasions.

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The success in Montichiari keeps Cundy on track for a gold in Brazil as he aims to put the pain of a much-publicised kilo disqualification at London 2012 behind him.

Great Britain team-mates Kadeena Cox (C4 500m time trial) and Megan Giglia (C3 pursuit) also triumphed on the first day of this year's championships.

Cox, who has multiple sclerosis, was set to ride with Cundy and Jon-Allan Butterworth in Sunday's mixed team sprint but has now been ruled out after being reclassified from the C2 to the C4 category after officials deemed her impairment to be less severe.

A British Cycling statement said they had 'protested the decision' unsuccessfully and declared that 'Louis Rolfe is likely to step in and replace Cox.'

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