Swansea 2014 - Day 2 morning review

McKillop will look to make it a European double with the 1500m T38 still to come on Saturday (23 August). 20 Aug 2014
Man in green shirt holding an Irish flag and smiling to the camera

Michael McKillop won his 400m T38 event at the Swansea 2014 IPC Athletics European Championships

ⒸSporting Wales

Ireland’s double world and Paralympic champion Michael McKillop lived up to his reputation as the world’s greatest Paralympic middle-distance runner, streaking away from the rest of the field in the 800m T38 to win gold at the IPC Athletics European Championships on Wednesday (20 August).

The 24-year-old showed no ill-effects from the injury woes that had delayed the start to his 2014 season, racing to the line in a time of 1:58.16 to add the European title to an already long list of outstanding achievements.

“To be able to come off the track after the difficult last 18 months I have had is great, I’m glad to be back,” said McKillop.

“After the World Championships I got injured and I haven’t run the 800m for eight months before today so I was going into the unknown. I’m just glad I was able to run a quick enough time to win.”

McKillop will look to make it a European double with the 1500m T38 still to come on Saturday (23 August).

Triple European champion Evgenii Shvetcov also led from start to finish in his race - the 400m T36 - showing the kind of form that won him four gold medals at the IPC Athletics World Championships in Lyon just over 12 months ago.

The 26-year-old, who also won 100m, 400m and 800m gold at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, controlled the race from the outside lane despite the efforts of Great Britain’s Paul Blake, who had to make do with silver behind the Russian once again.

Shvetcov clocked 53.59 – a season’s best, and just 0.28 seconds outside his world record mark.

Finland’s Henry Manni and Toni Piispanen both picked up their second medals of the championships; Manni added the 800m T34 title to the 100m gold he won yesterday, while world and Paralympic champion Piispanen powered home to win the 100m T51.

“I’m very happy, the race was good,” said Manni. “The time was not the best but the win is what I wanted. It’s my second medal of the Championships and I have still got more events to come. I am looking forward to the rest of the week.”

Germany’s David Behre put on a dominant display in the 400m T44 to secure his first major championship gold. The in-form 27-year-old, who set a new European record over one lap in Leverkusen in June, sped out the blocks to take an early lead and never looked in doubt as he powered home to the line in 51.97.

“I’ve got a big support here in Swansea and that really helps. The time was not so good but it’s a bit cold here which isn’t good for sprinting. I felt really comfortable,” said Behre.

“I’m competing again in the 200m so it’s good to start the championships with a gold medal. I’m hoping for another one.”

With six of the eight finalists in the women’s 400m T20 setting new personal bests, it was no surprise that the winner Marianne Verdonk threw herself to the ground as she crossed the line first in a time of 1:02.29.

“I’m very pleased with the first place. I ran out from the start of the race and I had to work for it in the last 100m,” she said. “My coach told me to go for it from the start and I’d succeed.”

Gold in the women’s 100m T13 went to 16-year-old Erin McBride - the fifth for the host nation – in a time of 13.58.

In the field events, multiple world and Paralympic gold medallist Alexey Ashapatov notched up yet another major championship gold, winning the javelin F57. The Russian threw 34.19m with the shot put and discus still to come this week.

Adrian Matusik of Slovakia won the shot put F44 with 16.19m, and the Czech Republic’s Jan Vanek added the European club throw T51 title to the world bronze he won in Lyon last year, throwing a best of 23.78m

“It’s been a great championships for me, I’ve really enjoyed it. I’m absolutely delighted to have won the gold medal,” said Vanek.

Azerbaijan’s Olokhan Musayev took gold in the discus F56, throwing a season’s best 41.63m, just 14 centimetres shy of the European record he set at London 2012. Serbia’s Drazenko Mitrovic broke his own F54 world record – which he also set in London - throwing 33.68m to finish fourth overall.

Anastasiia Mysnyk of Ukraine improved on the European bronze medal she won two years ago to take gold with a new personal best of 12.73m in the shot put F20 – pushing her compatriot - the defending champion Svitlana Kudelya – down in to third.

And in the jumps, Georgios Kostakis picked up his second 2014 European title for Greece, winning the long jump T47 with 6.50m to add to his triple jump victory yesterday. Spain’s Sara Martinez saved her best until last in the long jump T12, clearing 5.35m in the sixth round to secure victory.

“That’s my first gold medal. I have won silver and bronze before but it’s a nice to get a gold,” said Martinez. “It was a little cold and the conditions made it hard to get a good long jump. I’m pleased to have won.”

In the morning’s semi-finals, Turkey’s Oznur Yilmazer was the fastest of the qualifiers in the women’s 100m T11, whilst in the men’s 100m T11 semis, Frenchman Timothee Adolphe also managed a personal best to go through as the quickest of the four in this afternoon’s final. Radoslav Zlatanov of Bulgaria – bronze medallist at Lyon 2013 - was the quickest in the men’s 100m T13 semi-finals.

The live stream from Swansea 2014, together with videos on demand of individual races, are available to embed on websites in some territories via the IPC’s YouTube channel. For further information please contact IPC Digital Media Manager Natalia Dannenberg-Spreier.

In addition, HD quality broadcast footage from Swansea 2014 is available from the IPC’s Broadcast Manager Jose Manuel Dominguez.

Daily highlights will be available for digital channels via Omnisport, whilst individual races as video on demand can be embedded via Perform’s e-player