Northamptonshire has more Rio Paralympic success to celebrate, after a county-based coach helped one of Para GB’s team to silver.
Baldip Sahota is lead coach for two British wheelchair fencers competing out at the Rio Paralympics.
Baldip, who with his wife Hilary, founded Touché Fencing Club (TFC) in Towcester where they have gone on to produce fencers to international competition level and a club that caters for beginners and social ‘fun’ fencers.
He coaches Para GB’s Piers Gilliver and Dimitri Coutya, and Piers won the silver medal in the men’s épée category A final.
Piers also competed in the foil category A competition, but unfortunately did not make it beyond pool rounds.
Dimitri was knocked out the épée category B contest in the quarterfinals by the Belarussian Andrei Pranevich who went on to take the gold medal.
He was fencing in the foil category B group, but lost his quarterfinal match on Wednesday afternoon to Daoliang Hu of China.
In 2011 Baldip was approached by the British Disabled Fencing Association to coach 11 year old Gabi Down, one of the youngest fencers on the international wheelchair fencing circuit. Gabi represented Great Britain at London 2012 and Baldip was also selected as coach at his first ever Paralympics.
Touché was one of the first club in the country to integrate non-disabled and wheelchair fencers together. With the loss of funding from UK Sport wheelchair users have trained at TFC using non-disabled fencers as sparring partners. With this dedication and hard work TFC got the two fencers to qualify for Rio.