Hannah Cockroft set a World Record in the T34 100m on the opening night of the World Para Athletics Championships in London.
Cockroft achieved an eighth world championship gold in a world record time of 17.18 seconds in the T34 100m in the very stadium where she first set the track on fire five years ago in 2012.
By the 40m stage Cockroft was already moving away from the rest of the field, spurred on by an ever enthusiastic home crowd.
After the race Cockroft said: “You know, I can’t even remember what was happening in the race. It’s all a bit of a blur. There were so many people who know your name and are supporting you in there. There was so much noise; it was incredible. I think I had forgotten what it was like – that is what we do this for; that’s why we work so hard.
Right behind Cockroft was 16-year-old Kare Adenegan who claimed silver in what was a tough race and arguably pushed Cockroft towards her record.
With a creditable time of 18.01 Adenegan said: “I was focusing on my own race and I knew that I’d had a strong start and I had to keep it going. I couldn’t see anyone else around me and I was thinking ‘power it on, power it on’; I had to focus on what I needed to do.”
The F32 Club Throw saw mixed fortunes for the British team. Gemma Prescott and Abbie Hunnisett faced stiff competition in a class field.
Two-time Paralympic F32 bronze medallist, Prescott, built her results with an opening throw of 18.24m followed by 19.37m and 19.66m to see her take an early lead. In her second series, which she entered in bronze position following a strong opening series by world record holder Maroura Ibrahmi of Tunisia, and multiple global medallist, Mounia Gasmi of Algeria.
Unfortunately for Hunnisett, three fouls in her second series left her settling for eighth place on a day where she just couldn’t find her best form, with Prescott’s brilliant bronze – her first medal at a world championships – confirmed following the rest of the field being unable to better her fifth round best of 19.97m.
Delighted with another global medal, Prescott commented: “That was great; I just really enjoyed being out there. The crowd were incredible and it really brought back a lot of memories from 2012. I’ve been in here a couple of times since then, and, for me, this is just a really special place to come and compete.”
British Athletics medallists at the World Para Athletics Championships London 2017:
Hannah Cockroft – T34 100m
Kare Adenegan – T34 100m
Gemma Prescott – F32 Club Throw