In 2017, Bradford was the largest squad contingent of the largest region competing in the Special Olympics National Summer Games, held in Sheffield.

Ella Curtis and Stephen Thorne with their winning medals at the GB Special Olympic Games

It was the first time Yorkshire and the Humber had ever sent a cycling team to a National Games and the two cyclists were from Bradford and Keighley.

Stephen Thorne from Keighley and Ella Curtis from Baildon both returned with podium medals and ribbons.

They became media stars featuring on three separate local news TV articles, a national breakfast TV feature and several local radio features in Sheffield, Leeds and Bradford and made newspaper articles in the Keighley Chronicle and Telegraph and Argus. ‘Rocket Man’ Stephen Thorne made many friends along the way and Ella Curtis stole hearts and inspired many as Yorkshire’s first female Special Olympics Tricycle racer.

Ella continues to cycle and compete and in March 2019 will be one of five Bradford Special Olympians representing the GB team at the Special Olympics World Summer Games in Abu Dhabi.