George wins fourth title, Bieule grabs record at track & field championships

By Katie Branham | June 22, 2014, 3:22 p.m. (ET)

 Josh George won the T53 100, 400, 1500 and 5,000-meter events at the U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Championships

SAN MATEO, Calif. – An American record by Natalie Bieule (Miramar, Florida) and a fourth win from Josh George (Champaign, Illinois) highlighted the final day of competition at the U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Championships at the College of San Mateo.

In the women’s F40-44 discus, Bieule set an American record of 28.93m/94-11 on her second attempt. Biuele recorded four marks farther than her previous record of 26.69m/87-6 that she set in April

“It took a lot of hard training and focusing on what I had to do,” Bieule said. “I came out of nowhere, no one has heard of me, and I want to make my mark know. My coach, Scott Danberg has been excellent, and I’ve come so far in the past seven months.

“I never thought million years I would be here. I’m so blessed to be a part of this community, it is just amazing. It is so motivating and inspiring watching all of these athletes and it motivates me to be to keep pushing to reach my maximum potential.”

The men’s 1500-meter featured several close finishes that came down to the line. In the men’s T53-54 race, George and Brian Siemann (Savoy, Illinois) raced together through the first 1200, but George pulled ahead to take the win by a second and a half in 3:24.46. George also won the 100, 400 and 5,000 earlier in the competition.

In the men’s 13/20/37/38 class, Michael Kinoshita (Folsom, California) had the lead coming down the homestretch, but Michael Murray (Nashville, Tennessee) unleashed a strong kick to take the win by less than two-tenths of a second in 4:27.50. 

In the women’s 44-46 400, 16-year-old Grace Norman (Jamestown, Ohio) powered down the homestretch to overtake Megan Absten (Burlington, Washington) and take the win in 1:05.59.

“I took off strong and on the backstretch Megan came up on me, and I kind of gave up a little bit, and then I thought, ‘I can’t give up, I’m at nationals,” Norman said. “Then I got to the final 100 and I started to drive home, and I heard the announcers say that I was challenging for the win, and I thought, ‘oh yeah there is.’ It was a really good race.”

The championships were hosted in cooperation with USA Track & Field Pacific Association, the College of San Mateo and the San Mateo County Silicon Valley Convention and Visitors Bureau.

For more information on the 2014 U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Championships, visit USParalympics.org. Full results are available at RecordTiming.com

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