U.S. Paralympics Track and Field closes most successful event ever

By Jamie M. Blanchard | July 28, 2013, 4 p.m. (ET)
Raymond Martin
Raymond Martin is the first man to win five track and field world championships in the same year.

LYON, France - The United States finished the 2013 International Paralympic Committee Athletics World Championships with 52 medals, one short of winning the medal count in Lyon, France. The combination of 17 gold medals, 18 silvers and 17 bronzes won throughout the nine day competition put Team USA just behind Russia.

Brazil (40), Ukraine (30) and Great Britain (29) rounded out the Top 5 in overall medals.

Previous to the 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships, the most medals won by Team USA in track and field at the Paralympic Games or world championships, since the creation of U.S. Paralympics in 2001, was the 34 medals won at the 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships in Christchurch, New Zealand. At the London 2012 Paralympic Games, Team USA won 28 medals.

U.S. Paralympics took over the management of the Paralympic track and field program in 2005, assuming the role of a national governing body. 

Competition closed Sunday in Lyon without a medalist for Team USA. Amanda McGrory (Kennett Square, Pa.) and Susannah Scaroni (Tekoa, Wash.) finished fourth and fifth in the women's marathon T54. In the men's marathon T54 competition, Josh George (Herndon, Va.) finished fifth with a time of 1:32:28, while second, third and fourth place were a photo finish with all competitors crossing in 1:32:27.

The U.S. medaled on every other day of the competition.

Tatyana McFadden (Clarksville, Md.) led the medal haul with gold medals in the women's 100, 200, 400, 800, 1500 and 5000 meters T54, becoming the first woman ever to win six events in the same IPC Athletics World Championships. Raymond Martin (Jersey City, N.J.) added five gold medals of his own in T52 races, becoming the first man to win five world titles.

"I can't quite believe it," McFadden said after her final event, the women's 400m T54. "It's definitely a dream come true - the first woman to win all events from the 100 to the 5,000. History is made."

"To sweep six in a row has been really, really tough but you have to have belief in all events you do because if you have any doubts you already start to lose the race," added McFadden, who won three gold medals and a bronze medal at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

Other world champions crowned in Lyon: Jeremy Campbell (Perryton, Texas), men's discus F44; George, men's 800m T53; Elexis Gillette (Raleigh, N.C.), men's long jump F11; Cassie Mitchell (Atlanta, Ga.), women's shot put F52/53; and Jarryd Wallace (Athens, Ga.), men's 200m T44. Richard Browne (Jackson, Miss.), Blake Leeper (Kingsport, Tenn.), Jerome Singleton (Irmo, S.C.) and Wallace also won gold in the men's 4x100m relay T42-46.

For a complete list of Team USA medalists, click here.

U.S. athletes also set multiple world records in Lyon. Browne ran a 10.83 in the men's 100m T44 semifinal. McFadden ran a 1:44.44 in the women's 800m T54. Wallace ran a 22.32 in the men's 200m T44 semifinal then broke that world record in the final with 22.08. In the men's 4x100m relay T42-46, Team USA ran a world record 40.73.

The 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships, July 19-28, featured more than 1,100 athletes from nearly 100 countries. On demand video is available at www.ParalympicSport.TV while results are available at www.paralympic.org/events/lyon2013.

Ten veterans and two active duty service members were among the 76 Americans competing. U.S. Paralympics, through a partnership with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense, is providing thousands of opportunities for veterans and service members with physical disabilities to compete in Paralympic sport at the recreational, intermediate and elite levels.

Veterans won three medals in the competition. U.S. Army veteran Scot Severn (Caro, Mich.) won a silver medal in the men's shot put F52/53 with a season's best 8.26 meters. U.S. Army veteran Ce-Ce Mazyck (Columbia, S.C.) claimed bronze in the women's javelin F57/58 with a throw of 19.83m. U.S. Army veteran Scott Winkler (Pittsburgh, Pa.) won bronze in the men's shot put F54/55 with a throw of 10.82m.

For more information, please contact Jamie Blanchard, U.S. Paralympics, at 719-237-2179 or jamie.blanchard@usoc.org