Jason Smyth from City of Derry won his sixth World Championship gold medal when he won the T13 100m in a time of 10.63 seconds at the Para Athletics World Championships in London last night.
Michael McKillop from North Belfast Harriers made it a double celebration for the Irish when he added the T38 800m title in a season’s best 2:00.91 only moments later. It was a remarkable eighth world championship gold for McKillop.
Earlier in the day, Patrick Monahan of the Le Cheile club made his World Championship debut in the T54 1500m heats, finishing ninth in 3:14.65. With no 1500m race in his own T53 class, athletes like Monahan can compete a class ‘up’ in T54, although they are at a disadvantage. In Wednesday’s T53 800m heats, Monahan finished 6th in 1:48.41, missing out on a place in the final.
Smyth, who celebrated his 30th birthday earlier this month, is back on the track this evening in the 200m heats (T13), while Orla Comerford of Raheny Shamrock makes her world championship debut in the T13 100m. In this morning’s session, Cushinstown’s Paul Keogan goes in the T37 200m heats.
More than 1,100 athletes from 95 countries are competing in the World Championships, which began on Friday and continues until next Sunday.
First to win medals for Ireland were Niamh McCarthy of Eagle AC in Cork and Leevale’s Orla Barry who both took silver in the discus on Saturday. In the F41 discus, McCarthy threw 26.17m to finish second behind Paralympic champion Raoua Tlili of Tunisia whose winning throw of 32.29m was a championship record. Barry’s 28.89m in the F57 class saw her finish second behind Paralympic and reigning world champion Nassima Saifi who took gold with a massive 34.05m throw.
On Friday evening, Rio Paralympian Greta Streimikyte of Clonliffe Harriers finished a fighting fourth in the women’s T13 1500m final with a time of 4:47.54.
*Raheny’s Orla Comerford finished sixth in the T13 100m final on day four with a time of 12.55secs – one hundredth of a second off her best set a few weeks ago. This was Comerford’s World Championship debut. Both Jason Smyth who won his T12 200m heat in a season’s best 21.89 secs, and Paul Keogan 3rd in his T37 200m heat in 25.27 seconds have made it through to their finals.
Jason Smyth, City of Derry AC, T13 100m/200m
Michael McKillop, North Belfast Harriers, T37 800m/1500m
Paul Keogan, Cushinstown AC, T37 200m /400m
Patrick Monahan, Le Cheile AC, T53 800m/T541500m
Niamh McCarthy, Eagle AC, F41 Discus
Orla Barry, Leevale AC, F57 Discus
Noelle Lenihan, North Cork AC, F38 Discus
Deirdre Mongan, F53 Shot
Orla Comerford, Raheny Shamrocks, T13 100m
Greta Streimikyte, Clonliffe Harriers, T13 1500m