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Petrucio Ferreira dos Santos of Brazil wins and sets a new world record in the Men's 100m T47 Final at the London 2017 World Para Athletics Championships.

Petrucio Ferreira dos Santos

Athletics
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The Brazilian claimed two gold medals – the 100m and 200m T47 - at the London 2017 World Championships, living up to expectations after winning his first major global title on home soil at the 2016 Rio Games.

Injury had ruled Ferreira out of the World Championships in 2015, but he had already made a big impression that year, despite only beginning his racing career in 2014.

At the Sao Paolo Grand Prix in April 2015, Ferreira got the better of his compatriot, the Paralympic and world champion Yohansson Nascimento, setting a new world record in the 200m T47.

He clocked 21.49, knocking an impressive 0.25 seconds off the previous T47 world record set by Australia’s Heath Francis back in 2008.

Ferreira went on to clinch double sprint gold at the Parapan Am Games in Toronto, Canada in August 2015. But an injury to his thigh just weeks before the World Championships meant he was not able to compete in Qatar.

Still, Ferreira, who had his left arm amputated below the elbow aged two after an accident with a grinding machine, bounced back and lined up at the 2016 Paralympic Games as the favourite for gold in the men’s 100m T47.

The young sprinter didn’t disappoint, breaking the world record in the heats and again in the final with a time of 10.57. Just 19-years -old at the time of the Games, he also won 400m T47 silver and was part of the Brazilian 4x100m T42-47 relay quartet that finished second behind Germany.

He went on to knock a further 0.04 seconds off his 100m best at London 2017 and could well threaten Irishman Jason Smyth’s title of fastest Paralympian on the planet (10.46) if his progression continues.

Biography

Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Limb deficiency
Origin of Impairment
Acquired
Classification
T47

Further personal information

Residence
João Pessoa, BRA
Occupation
Athlete, Student
Languages
Portuguese
Higher education
Physical Education - Mauricio de Nassau Faculty: João Pessoa, BRA

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He got involved in athletics in 2013.
Why this sport?
His athletic talent was noticed while he was playing futsal for his school team. He then signed up to compete at a school event and won, despite having never trained and using borrowed shoes.
Club / Team
Esporte Clube Pinheiros: São Paulo, BRA
Name of coach
Pedro de Almeida Pereira [personal], from 2014

International debut

Year
2014
Competing for
Brazil

General interest

Hobbies
Listening to music. (Olimpiada Todo Dia YouTube channel, 22 Apr 2020)
Memorable sporting achievement
Setting a world record in the T47 100m at the 2019 World Championships in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Olimpiada Todo Dia YouTube channel, 22 Apr 2020)
Most influential person in career
Maria Natividade, who helped him to become an athlete. (Olimpiada Todo Dia YouTube channel, 22 Apr 2020; Athlete, 18 Jul 2017)
Injuries
In January 2019 he lost two teeth and fractured his upper jaw after diving into a river in Jardim de Piranhas, Brazil. He required surgery, and returned to training in March 2019. (globoesporte.globo.com, 28 Apr 2019; brasil2016.gov.br, 10 Jan 2019; globoesporte.globo.com, 07 Jan 2019)

In September 2015 he injured his thigh while competing at a tournament in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He returned to training in early October, but in the same month he sustained a hamstring injury two days before he was set to compete at the 2015 World Championships in Doha, Qatar. He was unable to participate in any of his events at the tournament. (globoesporte.globo.com, 30 Apr 2017; paralympic.org, 31 May 2016; altervista.org, 02 Apr 2016; caixa.gov.br, 07 Oct 2015)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Faith, focus and strength." (Olimpiada Todo Dia YouTube channel, 22 Apr 2020)
Awards and honours
In 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 he was named Para Athletics Athlete of the Year by the Brazilian Paralympic Committee [CPB]. (agenciabrasil.ebc.com.br, 17 Dec 2019; cpb.org.br, 06 Dec 2018; globoesporte.globo.com, 04 Dec 2017, 07 Dec 2016; paralympic.org, 02 Dec 2016)

He was named the 2016 Male Paralympic Athlete of the Year in Brazil. (paralympic.org, 08 Dec 2016; globoesporte.globo.com, 07 Dec 2016)
Ambitions
To compete at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (olimpiadatododia.com.br, 29 Sep 2018)
Impairment
At age two his arm was amputated below the elbow after an accident with a grinding machine. He had been trying to imitate his father, who used the machine to grind grass to feed the cows on the family's farm. (cpb.org.br, 08 Jun 2017; altervista.org, 02 Apr 2016; ndonline.com.br, 19 Aug 2014)
Other information
SUPPORT
When he was a young athlete he competed at the Brazilian School Games held in Joao Pessoa, Brazil. He was spotted by a coach who wanted him to remain in Joao Pessoa to train, but he did not have the resources to stay in the city. He was then helped with housing by the mother of another young athlete, who was also from his hometown of Sao Jose do Brejo da Cruz, Brazil. He won the gold medal in the T47 100m at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro on September 11th, the birthday of the woman who had helped him. "Today is the birthday of a lady who helped me, who housed me, who gave me the chance to practise this sport when I had nothing." (olimpiadas.uol.com.br, 12 Sep 2016)

Results

Unit Date Rank
IPC Athletics 2015 World Championships (Doha, Qatar)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 200 m T47 Heat 1 2015-10-24 9999
Men's 100 m T47 Heat 1 2015-10-27 9999
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T47 Heat 1 2016-09-10 1
Men's 100 m T47 Final Round 2016-09-11 1
Men's 4x100 m T42-47 Final Round 2016-09-12 2
Men's 400 m T47 Heat 2 2016-09-16 1
Men's 400 m T47 Final Round 2016-09-17 2
World Para Athletics Championships London 2017 (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T47 Final 1 2017-07-15 1
Men's 100 m T47 Heat 1 2017-07-15 1
Men's 400 m T47 Heat 1 2017-07-18 4
Men's 400 m T47 Final 1 2017-07-19 9999
Men's 200 m T47 Heat 2 2017-07-21 1
Men's 200 m T47 Final 1 2017-07-22 1