Joanna Butterfield took gold with a world record throw in the women’s club throw. The F51 event is classified for wheelchair users, which Britain had two competitors in the final.
Kylie Grimes was just short of making the podium as her throw was just over 3m from taking gold. For Butterfield her throw of 22.81m was enough to smash the world record and claim Paralympic Gold.
Butterfield, a former army civil servant, was paralysed after an operation for a tumour on her spinal cord and had previously played wheelchair rugby. She played alongside Grimes, who represented Great Britain in wheelchair rugby at London 2012.
Butterfield had something in common with Dave Henson who competed in the men’s T42 200m final. Both the athletes came from a military background and now have Paralympic medals in common.
Henson competed with compatriot Richard Whitehead in the T42, which is for athletes with impaired or amputated limbs. The two sprinters have had to get used to running on two prosthetic blades, with assistance from Help for Heroes, to compete in Rio.
Whitehead ran the 200m in 23.39s to retain his Paralympic gold title, while the result wasn’t record breaking, the two time Paralympic champion broke the Paralympic record in his heat running at 23.08s.
Henson had to work hard to make the podium as he finished third to take bronze for Great Britain. The sprinter will be proud of his podium finish after only deciding to train for Rio after competing in the Invictus Games in 2014.
Also in Rio, six-time Paralympic champion David Weir missed the birth of his son to compete in this year’s games. Weir looked to retain his men’s T54 400m title last night and successfully did so by winning his heat with the fastest time of 46.66s.
He dedicated this tweet to his newly born son, soon after the race:
Welcome to the world Lenny Weir sorry I wasn’t there to see you born love you with all heart ❤
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