Golden girl Cockroft dominates in London

Great Britain's Hannah Cockroft celebrates winning the Women's 100m T34 Final.
Great Britain's Hannah Cockroft celebrates winning the Women's 100m T34 Final.
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Wheelchair racer Hannah Cockroft was emotional and victorious after rekindling memories of London 2012 with a dominant victory on the opening night of the World Para Athletics Championships.

Cockroft won a fourth straight T34 100 metres title for her eighth global crown, triumphing at the London Stadium where she burst to prominence five years ago.

The 24-year-old Halifax racer extended her undefeated streak in major championships to win in a world-record time of 17.18 seconds.

Kare Adenegan, the 16-year-old from Coventry, took silver in 18.01secs and Alexa Halko of the United States was third in 18.43. Briton Carly Tait was fifth in 19.58.

Cockroft won two Paralympic gold medals at London 2012 and three more in Rio last summer.

“Rolling out on to the track, the amount of support you get when people recognise your face, you can’t describe it. It’s amazing,” Cockroft said.

“I heard a few ‘go on Carlys’ and a few ‘go on Kares’, but the vast majority was just my name.

“I really wanted to cry before I had even started the race. I had to close off and focus on what I was about to do.

“It’s amazing. We haven’t had this level of support since London 2012 and it really is like coming home.

“It does get your heart beating a little bit and it is scary going out there. You don’t want to let those people down. I hope I did them proud tonight and I hope I can do them proud in the next two races we’ve got.”

Her time beat her own prior world record of 17.28, set in Switzerland in May. And she has also recorded personal bests over 400m and 800m in 2017.

She competes over 800m on Monday and 400m on Thursday and admits her form means she expects nothing less than victory.

“I’m not going to lie, I wanted to go a little bit quicker,” Cockroft added. “I expect myself to win. I try not to put that pressure on myself too much, but I know coming in here I’ve broken all three of the world records at the championships.

“I’m the fastest and fittest I’ve ever been. Everything’s going really well, so there’s absolutely no reason why, unless I get really tactically messed up in that eight, anything should go wrong. Touch wood and we’ll see.”