TORONTO — Highlighted by a U.S. podium sweep, Team USA added nine medals to its tally on Friday, including three gold, to wrap up track and field competition at the 2015 Parapan Am Games, bringing its total to 51 after five days of racing.
Raymond Martin (Jersey City, New Jersey) led a second Team USA sweep for the T52 class in the men’s 1500 to pick up his third gold of the week. Martin, the world record holder in the event, broke away with teammate Steven Toyoji (Campbell, California) right behind him after the 800-meter mark to finish 3:52.88 and 3:54.33, respectively. Isaiah Rigo (Cheney, Washington) followed four seconds after Toyoji to complete the podium sweep for the Americans.
"We had a lot of athletes in that race so we were going to work together as a team to make sure that we all medaled and it really just fell into our laps,” Toyoji said. “We couldn't have raced better."
Though four-time Paralympic gold medalist Martin takes pride in racing short, middle and long distances, he favors the endurance events and looks forward to the competition that the IPC Athletics World Championships in Doha, Qatar has to offer in October. With a marathon world title already won this year, Martin will look to defend five world titles in Doha, including the 1500.
“The 1500 is my favorite event and I think it will be by far the most interesting, especially going into Doha with some great guys in Europe,” Martin said. “I keep working on the 1500 and use marathons as training for that so hopefully this race will get better and better.”
Capturing silver at his first Parapan Am Games, Tyson Gunter (McCammon, Idaho) jumped 6.74m on his last attempt in the men’s long jump T13 to take second behind winner and world record holder Luis Felipe Gutierrez of Cuba. Team USA’s Markeith Price (Baltimore, Maryland) just missed the podium with a fourth place finish.
After winning silver in the F56/57 shot put on Tuesday, two-time Paralympian and Marine Corps veteran Angela Madsen (Long Beach, California) dominated in the women’s javelin F55/56, throwing 18.77m for the gold medal win and Parapan Am Games record.
“It’s amazing to be 55-years-young and an elite athlete,” Madsen said. “I’m proud to be accomplishing the things I’ve been accomplishing.”
David Prince (Venice, Florida), a 2012 Paralympian, won his first medal in Toronto with silver in the men’s 200 T44, flying through the finish line at 22.69 seconds for a Parapan Am Games record.
Four-time Paralympic medalist Jeff Skiba (San Diego, California) added a second bronze to his collection this week with a third place finish in the men’s javelin throw F44 (48.29m). Skiba also placed third in Thursday’s high Jump T42/44/47 where teammate Roderick Townsend (Stockton, California) set the T46 world record.
Chelsea McClammer (Richland, Washington) and Shirley Reilly (Tucson, Arizona) finished with a one-two punch again in the women’s 500 T53 ; McClammer clocked in at 56.54, and Reilly finished two seconds behind her. The dominant duo also took the top two podium spots in Thursday’s 800. McClammer, who shined at the 2011 Parapan Am Games with five gold medals, closed out her 2015 competition by going two for two with a pair of gold medals and a pair of meet records.
Full results from track and field events at the 2015 Parapan American Games can be found on Toronto2015.org with livestreaming available courtesy of the IPC. For everything Team USA in Toronto, visit TeamUSA.org/ParapanAm.