A Cleckheaton business has renewed its sponsorship with an international whitewater kayaker champion for the fifth year running.

Volkswagen Van Centre West Yorkshire has confirmed its committed to Leeds-born Claire O’Hara by providing her with a new van.

Claire O’Hara is Britain’s most successful freestyle paddler with seven world champion titles and numerous world records under her belt. She is currently in training to defend her World Champion title at the 2015 Freestyle Kayak World Championships, which will be held in Canada.

Speaking of the sponsorship Claire said: “The Volkswagen van centre initially got behind me in 2009 when I was going for my first world title – which  I won – and they have supported me ever since.

“I am so grateful to the West Yorkshire team, without the van it would be virtually impossible for me to pursue my goal of being the best in my sport.

“I travel all over Europe to train and compete, and spend months on the road, so my Transporter van becomes home for my kit and boats as well as myself. It is the perfect van for my lifestyle and sport and I feel very fortunate to have the van centre’s support and the chance to follow my dream.”

As part of the sponsorship the Volkswagen Transporter T5 van is converted by Exploria in order to safely transport Claire’s boats as well as providing a bed and adequate storage space for her extensive kit and personal belongings.

Andrew Caygill, director and Volkswagen Van Centre West Yorkshire, added: “It has been wonderful to see how Claire’s career has flourished over the years.

“Where possible, we are happy to help support local athletes to perform at the top of their game.

“Claire is certainly a very talented sports woman and a shining example of what you can achieve with hard work and dedication. We wish her continued success maintaining her championship titles.”