10 November 2019
Cockroft, Davies and Lyle crowned world champions in Dubai
Hannah Cockroft declared her 11th global title the best of the lot after storming to a world record in the World Para Athletics Championships in Dubai.
The 27-year-old has had a mixed year but delivered when it mattered most to win the T34 100m, stopping the clock in 16.77 seconds.
In doing so she outsprinted teenage wheelchair racing star Kare Adenegan, who took a superb silver in a race that saw the British pair dominate.
Cockroft’s world title was one of several on the busiest day of action for the British team so far, with Aled Davies winning shot put gold for the fourth successive global championship.
Maria Lyle, meanwhile, enjoyed winning her first individual world title after a succession of near-misses in previous events.
There were also medals for Andrew Small and Harri Jenkins on the track while Kyron Duke took his place on the podium following an exceptional performance in the field.
The titles mean more and more. Kare Adenegan is the biggest rival I’ve ever had; she’s a fantastic athlete.
“I think number 11 is probably the best yet. It was definitely the hardest to win,” said Cockroft.
“It’s great that I’ve come out on top here but you know that can switch around at any time. You’ve got to take the gold when you can and keep working hard.
“I really wanted to come and win the gold. I would have been happy with silver because I know Kare has been working hard and is strong, and was the world record holder.
“I just about managed to hold back the tears when I crossed the finish line, and it was an emotional moment on the podium.”
Aled Davies celebrates with his fiance seven-week-old baby daughter, Phoebe
Davies is no stranger to the world title, having achieved the feat in each of the past three championships before Dubai 2019.
But he admitted this was the hardest of them all, not feeling technically at his best but still doing enough to throw 15.38 metres in round four of the F63 shot put.
And this triumph had an extra special feeling, with seven-week-old daughter Phoebe in his arms as he celebrated another gold medal.
He said: “Fourth time – it’s very special – I think back to my first world champs in New Zealand in 2011 and I got fourth place at the age of 18, and now here we are, almost ten years later and we’re still on top of the world taking world records and winning gold medals.
Fatherhood is the only motivation you need. I don’t do this for me now – I’ve achieved everything I’ve wanted to achieve.
“I’ve been dreaming too hard and too long to roll over and hand over titles. I had to fight for this one – I really did – I dug deep and luckily I hung on by the skin of my teeth.
“I’ve won golds at every tournament and world records, so if I can keep on dominating as long as possible and show that beautiful little girl how it is done then that’s great.”
There was also joy for Lyle, sprinting to gold in the women’s T35 100m final to win a long-overdue maiden individual world title.
Now a six-time world medallist, the 19-year-old recovered from a stumble to come home in 14.62 seconds.
Maria Lyle celebrates her 100m win in Dubai
There was a double medal haul in the men’s T33 100m as Small and Jenkins sealed silver and bronze respectively.
Small, the Paralympic bronze medallist, went one better than his bronze in London, sealing the silver in a time of 17.71 seconds after a very efficient display.
While for European champion Jenkins, this result marked a breakthrough to the global stage ahead of next year’s Paralympic Games.
Bronze also went the way of Duke in the F41 shot put after throwing 13.82 metres, with the British Athletics medal tally in Dubai sitting at ten – four of them gold – ahead of the second week of competition.
Joint the ParalympicsGB movement
The ParalympicsGB movement
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