28 Jul 2013

All eyes on Jonnie Peacock at London Anniversary Games

The spirit of London 2012 is in the air again as the Anniversary Games remind us of those golden days a year ago, writes Sports Reporter Jordan Jarrett-Bryan.

Sprinter Jonnie Peacock. (Getty)

The attendances and levels of excitement have been high at the Olympic Stadium this weekend and so they should be. In Usain Bolt, we are seeing an athlete who is one in a generation (maybe two).

A sprinter who is a freak. One, who can do phenomenal things that most cannot train to do. And then there is Mo Farah who is not only a world class long distance runner, but an entertainer too.

When you can run the lengths and times at the speed at he does, you deserve all the adoration you get. And despite a disappointing showing from athletics golden girl, Jessica Ennis-Hills on Saturday, most people cannott do just one of her events well, let alone the full set in the heptathlon.

If conditions allow, hopefully I can regain the world record. Jonnie Peacock

But the Paralympics really opened the nations eyes to something most knew nothing about. And the country seems to be extremely thankful for that.

World record hopes

Jonnie Peacock is competing in the T44 100m, where he hopes to regain the record he previously set. Peacock’s fastest time which stood at 10.85, was broken at the IPC Games in Lyon last week by American rival Richard Browne.

The world record is currently held by Brazilian Alan Oliveira at 10.77, who makes up the third part of this extraordinary rivalry – but breaking that record is at the forefront of Peacock’s mind. “If conditions allow, hopefully I can regain the world record,” the Paralympic champion said.

Paralympic quadruple gold medallist David “Werewolf” Weir has taken a year out in what has been a semi-retirement. But the track and marathon racer has become a star and an athlete the public want to see, in the same way people want to see Andy Murray or Bradley Wiggins.

‘Biggest event since Paralympics’

Overhearing a couple of brothers inside the Olympic Stadium talking about how excited they were about seeing David Weir really did resonate with me. Let us not forget these Paralympians aren’t like footballers, who are in our faces all the time and on TV every week.

The exposure for athletes in disability sports is very small, so for David Weir to be remembered and generate the excitement he has about seeing him again a year on, says a lot about his and other Paralympians achievements.

Hannah Cockcroft, Richard Whitehead, Daniel Greaves, Stephanie Reid and many other Brits are in action today. This afternoon is the biggest event in Disability Sport since the Paralympics and a great chance to further our knowledge and enjoyment of disabled track and field events.