Blazing New Trails
Runners competing in the T13 race at the 2016 Paralympics hit record times.
(L-R) Ethiopia’s Tamiru Demisse (silver), Algeria’s Abdellatif Baka (gold) and Kenya’s Henry Kirwa (bronze) on the podium after the men’s 1,500-meter race at the 2016 Paralympics, Sept. 11, in Rio de Janeiro. The class in which they competed, T13, is among those for the visually impaired. Baka blazed a new world record in the Paralympics men’s 1,500-meter final, clocking in at 3 minutes, 48.29 seconds. Demisse came in at 3 minutes, 48.49 seconds, and Kirwa at 3 minutes, 49.59 seconds. In fact, the first four runners to cross the finish line in the T13 race hit record times that would have been fast enough to clinch gold at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Inside the same stadium during August’s Olympic Games, the USA’s Matthew Centrowitz won the men’s 1,500-meter title in 3 minutes, 50 seconds.