World Para Athletics Championships: Sammi Kinghorn secures T53 100m world gold

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British wheelchair racer Sammi Kinghorn in action in Paris
Kinghorn made her World Championship debut in London in 2017
Venue: Charlety Stadium, Paris Dates: 8-17 July
Coverage: Daily reports across BBC Sport

British wheelchair racer Sammi Kinghorn hailed the “incredible feeling” of claiming gold after her T53 100m win at the Para Athletics World Championships.

The 27-year-old Scot, who won 800m silver on Tuesday, secured her third career world title in a championship record of 15.93 seconds.

“This is what I am here for,” she told BBC Sport as she won GB’s sixth gold at the event in Paris.

“I want to be world champion and to do it today is an incredible feeling.”

Kinghorn, who was left paralysed after an accident on the family farm in 2010, won double gold in the 100m and 200m at the 2017 World Championships in London and took bronze over 100m at both the 2019 Worlds in Dubai and the 2021 Tokyo Paralympics.

The Great Britain co-captain made a superb start in Friday’s final and looked strong, holding off the challenge of Swiss star Catherine Debrunner (16.06), who was chasing her fourth gold medal at these championships, and China’s Fang Gao (16.23).

“I knew I was in good shape,” Kinghorn added. “I’ve been training well and pushing well, but I didn’t know I could become world champion.

“I almost didn’t think I had it in me. I just had to focus on my own race and all I was thinking was ‘go fast’. Even when we crossed the line I didn’t know I had it, but to beat Catherine to the line was amazing.

“I know I am fast out of the blocks – I just need to stay in my own head. That is the thing I have learned. Over the years I have become more confident in my own ability and I tried to stay focused and not get distracted.”

Kinghorn will seek another medal on Saturday when she goes in the T53 400m final.

Earlier, Sophie Hahn won her second bronze medal of the championships, finishing third in the T38 200m in 26.35 seconds.

As in the 100m, Hahn again finished behind Hungary’s Luka Ekler and Colombia’s Darian Jimenez, who reversed positions from the shorter sprint as Ekler took gold and Jimenez settled for silver.

The 26-year-old Hahn, who said on social media this week she is fighting her toughest mental battle since coming on the scene as a teenager, was content with her performance.

“The 200m isn’t my strongest event so I am happy to come away with a season’s best and a bronze medal,” she told BBC Sport.

“I knew I had to go out hard – commit to the start, whip it off the bend and stand tall – so I think I did all of that.

“Going forward I need to work on my start and technique but also work on the end of my races to make sure I am working under pressure because I am not used to having people on my shoulder.”

There was heartbreak for Paralympic bronze medallist Hannah Taunton who was edged out for bronze in the T20 1500m.

The 32-year-old was unable to get past Ukraine’s Liudmyla Danylina in the home straight – finishing 0.14 seconds behind her rival in 4:33.07.

Elsewhere, there was a sixth long jump world title for German ‘Blade Jumper’ Markus Rehm who set a championship record as he maintained his dominance in his T64 event.

The 34-year-old, who lost his right leg below the knee in a wakeboarding accident as a teenager, soared to 8.49m in the fifth round – a mark that would have won gold at every Olympics since Athens in 2004 – and then matched it again in the final round.

It was short of the 8.72m world record he set in Germany last month but still well clear of his nearest challenger Derek Loccident of the United States whose best effort was 7.39m.



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