World Champ Singleton Predicts Golden Era of Amputee Sprinting

The American runner is in Guadalajara as a part of the USOC's Paralympic Advisory Committee. 15 Nov 2011
Jerome Singleton celebrating victory

Jerome Singleton celebrates winning the men's 100m T44 at the 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships in Christchurch, New Zealand.

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“This era could be the best for amputee sprinting you will ever see."

America’s world 100m T44 champion Jerome Singleton has predicted a golden era of amputee sprinting ahead of London 2012 after watching teammate Jarryd Wallace take gold in the 2011 Parapan American Games.

Singleton is in Guadalajara, Mexico for the Games as part of his role on the USOC’s Paralympic Advisory Committee and is not competing.

This allowed him to watch from the stands as Wallace upset the odds to beat the two favourites - Brazil’s world bronze medalist Alan Fonteles Cardoso Oliveira and USA’s Blake Leeper. And Singleton could not hide his delight at Wallace’s success, but admitted he was a little surprised at the result.

“That was quite a shock. We didn’t expect that,” Singleton said. “I was really happy watching that though as it shows Team USA is much stronger, so you better watch out in London next year.

“America is known for sprinters and Jarryd Wallace has come in there and shown we’ve got one more world-class competitor.”

At January’s World Championships, all seven finishers crossed the line in under 12 seconds and just 0.09 seconds separated the top four places. Yesterday the top five all went under 12 seconds, including Wallace who ran 11.31 to take gold. Singleton believes it highlights how competitive the T44 class is becoming and is not too concerned that Wallace’s time was 0.03 seconds quicker than the time he ran at the World Championships.

“This era could be the best for amputee sprinting you will ever see,” explained Singleton who believes the race for Paralympic gold in the 100 will not just be a two horse race between him and rival Oscar Pistorius.

"Next year in London is going to be something very special indeed," he added. "When I look at it everyone is a competitor. When you’re sleeping I’m working, and when you’re working, I’m still working so you better not go to sleep.

“Jarryd’s time was fast but when it comes down to it, it’s a Championship, and it doesn’t matter too much what time you run.

“In Championships I don’t race for times, I race for medals,” he said.