Brilliant Bushell earns plaudits
9:13am Tuesday 4th September 2012 in London Olympics 2012 - Latest News
Wheelchair sprinter Mickey Bushell brought tears to the eyes of a Paralympic icon by claiming Great Britain's fifth gold medal at the Olympic Stadium.
Bushell, who was born with seven vertebrae missing from the lower part of the back, upgraded his Beijing silver with a dominant victory in the T53 100 metres.
It was an emotional moment not only for the 22-year-old, but also for Canada's 14-time Paralympic champion Chantal Petitclerc, who has been working as a coach and mentor to the British team since January.
She said: "I was crying. We've spent the last two weeks together and you get attached to these boys and you want them to do well.
"He was brilliant, really brilliant."
The Telford athlete, the world record holder, got off to a flying start and raced away from the field to win in a new Paralympic record 14.75 seconds.
And he revealed watching David Weir's brilliant T54 5,000m win the previous night had fuelled his ambition to succeed.
"Last night I watched Dave Weir and as he crossed the line I was bouncing off the walls in my room. I didn't know what to do," he said.
"He's been a massive influence - just as a team-mate, he's been there for me."
Weir himself returns to the stadium tonight in pursuit of gold medal number two in the 1500m.
He still had time to congratulate his team-mate and protege, though, tweeting: "Smashed it mate wicked love ya x."
There was Irish joy as well as Michael McKillop sealed his status as the world's best Paralympic middle-distance runner by completing a London double with victory in the 1500m.
It was an emotional night all round for McKillop, who, in a Paralympic first, was presented with his medal by his mother Catherine, an ambassador for one of the Games' sponsors.
Two days after taking the 800m crown, McKillop obliterated at the opposition to claim the most convincing of victories in the T37 1500m.
The 22-year-old, who has cerebral palsy, came home in 4mins 08.11secs was a new Paralympic record and more than six seconds ahead of second place.
McKillop said: "It feels unbelievable, it feels fantastic to be able to do it in front of a crowd so big and cheering you on the whole way.
"Even though there was a British guy (Dean Miller) in my race I felt like they were cheering for me also."
"There was nobody going to beat me on the night, especially in front of the crowd with my friends and family there."
McKillop had been denied the chance to do the double in Beijing because the 1500m was not on the programme.