Stuart Weir is covering the IPC World Disability Games for @runblogrun. Stuart Weir is covering the 100 meters and the sixteen different heats in this event for our readers. It is a pretty impressive event.
There are 16 men’s 100 metres races in the IPC World Championships. That seems a lot but as Chairman of London 2017, Ed Warner, said – 100 metres races are exciting and whatever session you come you have a good chance of seeing one! Incidentally the 16 are comprised of 3 for athletes with visual impairment, 6 for the cerebral palsy class, 3 for amputees and 4 for wheelchair-users.
The quest for the title of world’s fastest Paralympian tends to be contested between visual impairment and amputee. At the 2015 World Championships the fastest man was Richard Browne (10.61) in the amputee T44 class just ahead of Jason Smyth (10.62) in the T13 visual impairment class.
The 2017 contest played out on Sunday evening in the London Stadium in the Queen Elizabeth Park (as we now have to call the 2012 Olympic stadium) in front of 32,000 spectators. Smyth regained his crown running 10.63 in a race which he dominated from start to finish. Smyth summed up his achievement: “That’s what you come to major championships to do, to cross the line first. To be back in this stadium is incredible. I don’t even know what my time was; championships are all about crossing the line first. Four world championship titles, that’s what it’s all about. You get so caught up in the moment it’s difficult to take it in sometimes”.
The T44 race was much closer with Jarryd Wallace staying with Peacock for much of the race before Peacock pulled clear to win in 10.75, still a phenomenal time to run with a prosthetic. However, as Peacock had run 10.64 slowing up in the heat, Smyth’s margin of victory as fastest paralympian was just 0.01 seconds.
Peacock said: “That was a PB for me in the heat and I guess I know that I was in good form but when it comes to the final I don’t care about times. It’s not about the times. To be completely honest with you, I think you saw it on the start line I had seriously bad cramp before the race. I was in really good form coming into these Champs. I’ve run 10.80s everywhere with no wind and I purposely lifted heavy weights before those races and that gave me good confidence coming here.
“I was excited to see what I could run fresh and I think you saw up to 70-80m I ran max and I definitely could have gone faster. I am always going to look back and think I could have done it, if I had held up better I could have done it. But at the end of the day, I came here for the world title and I’m thankful that I finished the race in one piece”.
Jarryd Wallace, bronze medallist said that it had been a privilege to take part is such a phenomenal race, adding: “There are not many better guys in the sport now than Jonnie Peacock. He is humble, competitive and a real fighter. And he puts his best races together when it matters”.
The evening promised much and delivered it all!