07 September 2012
Spirits were high in the Olympic Stadium for day eight's evening session as the crowd stood for the British national anthem once again as Josie Pearson received her gold medal from earlier today.
The action got underway with the T35 100m, where Sophia Warner (Steve King) finished fourth to match her position in the 200m. Her time was 16.90 and she missed a medal by just under half a second. The previous Paralympic record was 20.33 and all eight finalists beat it by over two seconds. As in the 200m, the race was won by Ping Liu of China and she set a world record 15.44.
She said, “I just didn’t have it in me tonight, I was so sore and driving out was difficult (from slipped disc), but I couldn’t give up the chance to go back out there and race. It’s been amazing, and I’ve come away with a PB in the 200m. I enjoyed the crowds – I didn’t realise I was such a show boater! The heat and final was never an option for me, if there had been a heat I’d never have made this final. I slipped my disc about four weeks ago but the medical team have kept me together so well and in a way it’s been good because I tapered which I usually find hard. The sport has really moved and I’ve moved with it – getting beaten shows that the standard has moved on.”
In the T53 200m, Mickey Bushell (Fred Periac) was unable to match his 100m gold. He entered the straight disputing second and was in a clear medal position but couldn’t quite hold off the late challenge of Yufei Zhao who denied him bronze by 0.32. Though he has gone faster with an uratified mark, his time was an European record 26.32.
He said, “I wasn't feeling great but I can't take away from the guys, they were just stronger today. It was a good race, and a bonus for me on top of the 100m. I haven't thought about the future just yet but I know what I need to do now, so ill just go back, talk to my coach and sort it out."
In the T54 1500m, Shelly Woods (Peter Eriksson) was near the back in the first lap which was covered in 59.95 but moved into a better position on the second lap which was passed in 2:02.43. She was lying third until they approached the bell when she was passed on the outside and got slightly boxed. She was sixth 200m out and that was her final position and her 3:37.97 left her 1.55 seconds behind the winner Tatyana McFadden who had covered the last lap in 49.95 seconds. The American also won the 400m and 800m.
Woods said, “It’s been a disappointing Games for me so far but racing in the stadium has been fantastic and I’d like to thank the amazing support along the way. I’m going to go into the marathon and give it my best shot. It’s been amazing in the stadium but I’m looking forward to getting out on the road and all I can do is give it my best shot.Tatyana is like the female Dave Weir and to outsmart her on Sunday will be tough – I expect the race to be tough, it’s a very technical course but I’m just going to go out and enjoy it. My dream as an athlete is to win a Paralympic gold medal and I want to keep going until I get that.”
In her first Paralympics, 16-year-old Jade Jones (Ian Thompson/Tanni Grey-Thompson) finished tenth in 3:39.03.
T42 200m champion Richard Whitehead (Liz Yelling/Keith Antoine) didn’t get a good enough start or first 50m to be a factor in the 100m and though he finished very fast he could only get up to seventh in 12.99, with gold won by Heinrich Popow of Germany in 12.40.
The Briton remarked: “I get a slow start in the 100m, so its a tough event for me. It’s a honour to be on this track, to be in the Olympic stadium. In 2005 I was dreaming about this day. To be in a 100m final in 2012 when I'd never run before in 2004 is amazing. I'm looking back now and I think it’s just an honour to be here."
In the F32/33/34 Men’s discus, world junior champion Kieran Tscherniawsky (Jim Edwards) finished 10th with 29.05m/925 points. He started with 28.16m and then improved to 28.59m before his third throw which was close to his season’s best.
He said, “I felt like I was going into a competition where everyone was better than me so I didn’t have a lot of confidence, but this isn’t the end of me, I’ll be back stronger. I’m disappointed but I’ll move onto the next one now.”