China’s Na Mi secured her second major double in the space of a year as she took gold in the women’s discus F37 on Friday morning (26 July), day seven of competition at the IPC Athletics World Championships in Lyon, France.
The 26-year-old dominates the discus and shot put throw, having won the double at both the 2008 and 2012 Paralympic Games as well as the 2011 World Championships. Ni Ma bettered her own championship record set in New Zealand two years ago, as she threw 33.09m in her third attempt to finish over 3m clear of her rivals.
Germany have now won an impressive eight gold medals all in the field – the latest courtesy of Brigit Kober, who added to her javelin F33/34 gold three days ago with a win in the women’s shot put F32/33/34.
Kober’s third throw of 9.92 (1008) was a new championship record and meant she also retained both titles from the last World Championships, as well as adding to her Paralympic double from the London Games last year.
Russia’s Vladimir Sviridov equalled his world record with an opening throw of 14.70m in the men’s shot put F36 to go one better than his silver medal from New Zealand, whilst the defending champion Pawel Piotrowski had to settle for bronze, despite managing a season’s best 12.91m.
Russian Paralympic champion Margarita Goncharova set a new championship record in the long jump F37/38, leaping to 4.94m (1000 points) in her penultimate jump to take the title ahead of Lithuania’s Ramune Adomaitiene (4.45m/931 points), who had to settle for world silver once more.
Out on the track, the session was dominated by 400m qualifiers. Tatyana McFadden looked like she had recovered from yesterday’s exertions, where she claimed two golds in one day, as she clocked a season’s best 54.70 to go through to the final of the 400m T54 - her sixth prospective gold medal from the 2013 World Championships.
Switzerland’s Edith Wolf also managed a season’s best in the second semi-final, although her time of 56.68 is unlikely to challenge the defending champion.
Raymond Martin followed his compatriot out on to the track and again put on a commanding display as he also looks to come away from Lyon with multiple gold medals. The 19-year-old shot away at the gun in his 400m T52 semi-final, pushing hard past the field from the inside lane to line up as favourite in tomorrow’s final.
In the women’s 400m T53 semi-finals, Hongzhuan Zhou of China and Shirley Reilly of the USA both looked in control as they won their qualifiers. Zhou, 24, will be hoping for a repeat of her Paralympic double last year having already won the 800m here in Lyon.
Mexico’s Edgar Navarro successfully retained his 200m T51 title in the re-run of the event which was declared void yesterday. The 42-year-old beat the world record holder Toni Piispanen of Finland to the line, clocking 40.68, a new championship record.
After the race Navarro said: ""It has really been a tough race due to what happened yesterday. I'm finally the winner and feel so excited! Many thanks to the IPC and to the French people for welcoming me this way."
Brazil’s world record holder Daniel Silva and America’s David Brown each won their qualifiers for the 400m T11 final.
Silva won silver two years ago and will be hoping to go one better in Lyon after posting the fastest time in qualifying, clocking 51.69.
In the first of the men’s 400m T13 semi-finals, Nambala Johannes of Namibia powered down the final 100m to secure his place in the final with Algeria’s Zine Skehri and Cuban Luis Manuel Galano finishing just behind with new personal bests.
It was a season’s best for Benjamin Gonzalez of Mexico in the second semi-final, as he showed impressive strength to power past Algeria’s Djamil Nasser in the closing stages, 50.70 the time. Defending champion Alexander Zverev of Russia also goes through automatically after finishing third.
As temperatures continued to soar in Lyon, Columbia’s Maritza Arango Buitrago controlled the first women’s 1,500m semi-final from the front. Russia’s defending champion Leena Pautova stayed neatly tucked in behind, just ensuring she crossed the line first as she nipped past in the last few metres.
Spain’s Elena Congost Mohedano rounded off her morning clocking the fastest qualifying time in the second 1,500m T12 semi, 5:06.64 seeing her through to tomorrow’s final.
The 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships, featuring over 1,000 athletes from nearly 100 countries, runs through until Sunday 28 July. It is the biggest gathering of international athletes since London 2012 and is being streamed each day live via www.ParalympicSport.TV.
Live results can be found at the Lyon 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships website whilst updates and behind the scenes pictures can be found at Twitter.com/IPCAthletics and Facebook.com/IPCAthletics. More pictures can be found at Flickr.com/ipc-athletics-lyon2013.com.