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Sports Therapy student supports Dame Kelly Holmes and others on charity bike ride

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Baggio Brown works long days at Goatham’s Great Kent Cycle Ride

by Lee Pinkerton

A University of East London (UEL) Sports Therapy student has gained invaluable work experience while supporting a charity bike ride whose participants included Olympic gold-medal winning runner Dame Kelly Holmes.

Third year student Baggio Brown, alongside his Sports Therapy lecturer Laura Obeng-Frimpong, recently provided support at Goatham’s Great Kent Cycle Ride, a three-day event organised by The Kent Sports Trust Foundation, in support of charity Help for Heroes.

Among the riders involved were Kent Sports Trust Foundation ambassadors Dame Kelly Holmes DBE MBE, who won two gold medals in the 2004 Olympics in Athens, and former international cricketer Geraint Jones MBE.

Baggio, who is 22 and lives in Beckton, was offered the opportunity to work at the bike ride by Ms Obeng-Frimpong, who already planned to be at the event with her company LM Sports Therapy. The offer resulted in three long days of hard work, Baggio admits. 

“The days started at 6am and finished around 6pm,” he reveals. “We were involved at the start of the race, at each stop and at the end. We gave the riders stretches and massage to help with DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) and fatigue.”

But Baggio feels all the hard work was well worth it.

He says, “My highlight was meeting Dame Kelly Holmes, who joined us on the third day, but I also got to know loads of people. You’re with them all day and eating meals together, so you quickly become friends.”

Baggio, who is named after the Italian footballer Roberto Baggio, was born in Jamaica and came to the UK with his family in 2011.  He will be entering his third and final year when he returns to UEL in September.