By Tom Degun

Sarah Storey_1_26_JuneJune 26 - Sarah Storey, the Beijing 2008 double champion, will lead an 18-strong ParalympicsGB cycling team at London 2012 after being named in both the road and track events in Manchester today.

Storey (pictured top) will seek to defend her titles in the pursuit and time trial to add to her collection of five Paralympic gold medals, three of which were won in swimming.

"Being selected for my sixth Games is very exciting – it has been a long time coming and one of the latest announcements I think I have been involved with," she said.

"Training and racing has been all focused on the end of August and the Paralympic Games, and being at home makes it extra exciting.

"I am looking forward to getting out there and racing now."

The 34-year-old from Manchester is one several Paralympic champions in the squad alongside Darren Kenny, Aileen McGlynn, Jody Cundy, David Stone and Rachel Morris.

Mark Colbourne_26_June
The team is also bolstered by new talent including reigning track pursuit world champion Mark Colbourne (pictured above) and 2011 track World Cup gold medallist Shaun McKeown, whose talent was identified at a BPA Paralympic Potential Day in Sheffield in 2009.

Also included is Jon-Allan Butterworth (pictured below, right) who was also originally discovered at a Potential Day in October 2007 and has since become the double world champion in the kilo.

Butterworth served as a weapons technician in Afghanistan in 2005 and Iraq in 2007 and lost his arm five years ago in a rocket attack on Basra air station.

"I'm proud to representing my country again," said 26-year-old Butterworth.

"I've been on an amazing journey.

"I have lots of people to thank and I know they'll be supporting me in London at my first Games."

The ParalympicsGB cycling team brought home 20 medals from Beijing 2008 to finish top of the sport's medal table – and Gareth Sheppard, performance manager for the British Para-Cycling team, admitted that will be a tough act to follow.

Jon-Allan Butterworth_26_June
"We're taking our largest ever team to the London Games and are looking forward to defending the many titles won in Beijing," he said.

"It will be tough trying to equal 17 gold medals and our athletes realise the expectation on their shoulders.

"[But] having the whole country behind them will really help us and we are confident of delivering some world class performances."

Chef de Mission Craig Hunter added: "Cycling was one of our highest performing sports in Beijing and the squad has continued to win medals on both the track and the road throughout the last three years.

"This is an exceptional group of athletes that we can today confirm will be joining ParalympicsGB and I am very proud that they will be representing Britain at the Paralympics this year."

To view the full team click here

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