Blade runner Peacock peerless as he powers to Paralympic 100m title

Blade runner Peacock peerless as he powers to Paralympic 100m title
By Sportsbeat

10/09/2016 at 02:53

Great Britain's Jonnie Peacock dominated his rivals to retain his blue-riband T44 100m title at the Paralympic Games in Rio.

With US sprinter Richard Browne, his long-term rival, absent, Peacock blitzed his rivals and he never looked like buckling under the intense pressure he was under to deliver.

He clocked a 10.81-second Paralympic record in the heats and repeated the exact same time in the final. He was in a class of his own, with no other athlete breaking the 11-second barrier.

"Nothing's ever going to beat London for the achievement but as a sporting achievement this was so much greater for me," said Peacock.

"The talent that was in this class was unbelievable. Paralympic sport is progressing so much at the minute.

"It's times like this where you have to look back on your experience as an athlete. There's so much pressure and it's so easy to get distracted.

"I got to 40m, there was a point where I started to get distracted, but I pulled myself back into the race and I just kept pushing and that's when I pulled away.

"I just want to say thank you to everyone who has been involved supporting me, there's too many to name."

Libby Clegg turned double silver into Paralympic 100m gold after a rollercoaster day in Rio.

Clegg smashed through the 12-second barrier for the first time in her career, when she clocked 11.91 seconds in the semi-finals.

But joy turned to despair after she was disqualified, officials claiming her guide, Chris Clarke, has led her for too much of the race.

But an appeal restored her final place and she held her nerve to win 100m T11 gold, after second places in Beijing and London in the T12 classification.

"It's not really hit me just yet. I'm over the moon, we ran a pretty similar time to the semi-final so I'm pleased with that," said Clegg.

"These things (the events earlier in the day) happen and you've just got to get on with it really and hope for the best.

"I've got an amazing team behind me. My training group are there day in day out and obviously there's Chris as well.

"He has been fantastic. I had a change of guides back in November and then Chris and I started working together in February. It's been a quick process." And it was a day for British sprinters to dominate over 100m.

First Georgie Hermitage won the T37 title in a world record time of 13.13 seconds and then, ten minutes later, Sophie Hahn won the T38 gold in 12.62 seconds, equalling the Paralympic Games best.

Elsewhere, Stef Reid insisted she had no regrets after her long jump silver medal. The European champion's best effort of 5.64 metres was over ten centimetres down on her season's best, meaning she matched her medal from four years ago in the T44 class.

However, France's Marie-Amelie Le Fur looked impressive to claim gold, recording a world record leap of 5.83m.

Le Fur and Reid are long-time rivals and have swapped world records on a number of occasions.

But the 31-year old was destined to be frustrated in her bid to complete her Paralympic medal set, after winning bronze in the colours of Canada eight years ago in Beijing.

"I'm proud of what I did. I'm so pleased for our event, it's come on leaps and bounds," she said.

(C) Sportsbeat 2016

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