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Looking towards athletics in Rio: T51 women’s world records

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This article is part of a ParaSport News series of articles looking at athletics world records and world records progression.


The women’s T51 class is the first of a number of T50 classes for wheelchair athletes.  Generally, this class is for people with most severe spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy and Les Autres conditions.  They have the least functional control of their trunk and upper limbs, while having no function in their lower limbs.


The most classes for most severe disabilities tend to be short on women’s competitors and historical world records, and this one is no exception.  Single world records are available for 6 track distances and two field events.  The oldest of these records dates to 1989, and was set by American V. Hill back in 1989 at Stoke Mandeville.  She had a time of 7:59.80.


Outside of that, most of the world records are more recent, dating to 2015 or 2016.  American Cassie Mitchell owns a pair of track records, while Canadian Beck Richter also owns a pair of track records. 35-year-old Mitchell’s records are in 100 meters and 200 meters, with times of 0:25.77 and 0:44.17 set at a meet in St. Paul, Minnesota in June of last year.  34-year-old Richter’s world records were in the 400 meters and 800 meters were both set in Arbon, Switzerland last June where she posted times of 1:47.62 and 3:59.03 respectively.


The remaining records are held by Great Britain’s Joanna Butterfield in the club throw, and Rachael Morrison of the United States in the discus throw.


Event Type Family Name Given Name NPC Birth Result Wind Date City Country
Women’s 100 m Mitchell Cassie USA 1981 0:25.77 +0.0 2015-06-20 St. Paul, Minnesota United States of America
Women’s 1500 m Hill V. USA 7:59.80 1989-07-28 Stoke Mandeville Great Britain
Women’s 200 m Mitchell Cassie USA 1981 0:44.17 +1.9 2015-06-20 St. Paul, Minnesota United States of America
Women’s 400 m Richter Becky CAN 1982 1:47.62 2015-06-06 Arbon Switzerland
Women’s 800 m Richter Becky CAN 1982 3:59.03 2015-06-07 Arbon Switzerland
Women’s Club Throw Butterfield Joanna GBR 1979 22.75 2016-06-15 Grosseto Italy
Women’s Discus Throw Morrison Rachael USA 1987 12.86 2015-10-27 Doha Qatar
Laura Hale
About Laura Hale (2569 Articles)
Laura Hale is a sport journalist, specializing in Paralympic and disability sport news. Prior to helping found ParaSport-News, she spent two and a half years working as a journalist on Wikinews, a citizen journalism site. As a journalist, she has covered the 2012 Summer Paralympics in London, the 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in La Molina, the 2014 Winter Paralympics in Sochi, and a number of other sporting events. She has additional experience with Paralympic sport having worked as a Wikipedian in Residence for the Australian and Spanish Paralympic Committees. She has a PhD in Communications from the University of Canberra.

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