Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Micheal McKillop T37 sensationally won gold for Ireland at Paralympic Games in Beijing tonight setting new Paralympic world record time of 1:59.39. This took 2.74seconds off McKillop's own record set two years ago at the World Championships.

McKillop, aged only 18, who is coached by his father Paddy, left field for dead with 200m to go and had three seconds to spare over Brad Scott of Australia and France's Djamel Mastouri.

“It’s a dream come true. It’s unbelievable. The other night I was very nervous when I was in the stadium; I didn’t really know what to expect, but when you get into the call room you’re on your own. You have to build your own emotions up, you have to lock them up and focus on your race. That’s what I did; I focused on my race and the dream of becoming a Paralympic champion has come true,” an ecstatic McKillop said after completing a victory lap.

After the emotional medal ceremony when Amhran na bFhiann rang out for the first time in the Bird’s Nest, Ireland’s Paralympic champion got the chance to speak to his mum Catherine at home in Antrim. “Oh yeah my mum is in hysterics! She was more nervous than I was going into the race. She had a tear in her eye she said when I crossed the line, so I can’t wait to see them. I can’t wait to get out and support the other athletes on the team now and enjoy the rest of the Games.”

Ireland also had two other competitors in action in the Bird’s Nest. Wexford’s Catherine Wayland, F51 combined, finished 6th in the women’s discus with a season's best of 6.13m.
Duleek’s Lisa Callaghan, F37 combined, finished an agonising 9th in the javelin with a throw of 22.87m - one spot away from a place in the final.

Following Gay Shelly’s bronze medal in the individual competition yesterday, Ireland combined BC1/BC2 boccia qualified for tomorrow’s quarter-finals. Drawn in the pool with Spain and Finland, the Irish beat Finland 7 – 3 but lost 1-12 Spain in a match where tactical placement was key.
Dressage rider Eilish Byrne finished an encouraging eighth with a score of 65.833% in the Individual Freestyle Dressage Test Grade II. Having completed her Paralympic competition Byrne will join the rest of the Irish team in Beijing.

Results Day 4

Archery (compound)
Sean Heary bt Michael Arenz (Ger) 108 - 104.

Michael McKillop T37, 800m, 1st, 1:59.39 (WR). GOLD
Catherine Wayland. F32-34/51-53, discus, 8th, 6.13m.
Lisa Callaghan, F35-38, javelin, 9th, 22.87m.

Ireland 7, Finland 3. Rd 2, Ireland 1, Spain 12.

Michael Delaney BV1 (with David Peelo), sprint, 5th, 11.460 secs(IR).
Sean Heary bt Michael Arenz (Ger) 108 - 104.

Eilish Byrne (Freestyle Grade II) 8th, 65.833%.

Football (7-a-side)
Ireland 0, Ukraine 7

David Malone S8, 100m bs heats, 5th; 10th overall.

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