Sophie was born with oculocutaneous albinism and is visually impaired. Her uncle knows Paralympic gold medallist Anthony Kappes and she was inspired to take up cycling after watching him perform at the Beijing Paralympics in 2008. Sophie was spotted by the Great Britain para-cycling coaches and she joined the Paralympic Development Programme in May 2013.
Sophie immediately made her mark on the world stage, winning two world titles and breaking two world records at her debut Para-cycling world championships in April 2014. Sophie, who teamed up with pilot Rachel James, set the ball rolling in Aguascalientes, Mexico by setting the new world record in the kilo posting a time of 1:05.912, almost two seconds quicker than their nearest rivals from Australia.
Backing that up, the pairing who had only been training together for less than six months, set the new world record in the sprint qualifiers, stopping the clock at 10.854 and going on to take a 2-0 victory over the Australian pairing of Brandie O’Connor and Breanna Hargrove. For the 2014 Commonwealth Games, Sophie paired up with pilot Helen Scott to represent England. The duo convincingly won the gold medal in both the sprint and the kilo events.
Sophie retained her world champion title in both the kilo and sprint events at the 2015 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships in Apeldoorn, Holland, this time with pilot Helen Scott.
If you have been inspired to get on a bike...
UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships, Apeldoorn (Holland)
Commonwealth Games, Glasgow (UK)
Gold - Kilo
Gold - Sprint
UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships, Aguascalientes (Mexico)
Gold – Kilo
Gold – Sprint