Mayhugh breaks world record twice on Tokyo 2020 Paralympics athletics opening day


( American sprinter Nick Mayhugh twice broke the world record in the men's T37 100 metres on the first day of athletics at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games here at the Olympic Stadium.



He first ran 10.97sec in the heats and then improved to 10.95 in the final.

The top three all set area records, as Andrei Vdovin of the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) clocked a time of 11.18 and Indonesian Saptoyoga Purnomo broke the Asian record in 11.31.

Zhou Xia of China smashed the world record in the women's T35 100m, taking away Australian Isis Holt's previous best by crossing the line in 13.00.

Holt broke her own world record in second and said to insidethegames her new area record felt like "my own little world record" as she delighted in winning the silver medal in 13.13.

Britain's Maria Lyle claimed bronze, as the top three stayed the same for a second Games in a row, although notably they all ran faster.

“It was emotional,” said Thomas Mayhugh, Nick Mayhugh’s brother.

Thomas Mayhugh is his brother’s coach and watched the athlete race from Charlotte, because COVID-19 restrictions kept him from the games.

The brothers have spent countless hours training on the track at Johnson C. Smith University on the road to Tokyo.

Thomas Mayhugh is his brother’s strength and conditioning coach and knows the work it took for him to get on the Olympic podium.

Nick Mayhugh is midfielder for the United States Para 7-A-Side National Team and decided to compete in track at the Paralympics as a sprinter.

That meant training a completely different set of muscles. As a soccer player, Nick Mayhugh has the endurance muscles so he had to train for sprints.

“It wasn’t like it just clicked. It was getting more frustrating and then started to make sense,” said Thomas Mayhugh.

Nick Mayhugh is used to overcoming those frustrations until things make sense.

He has a mild form of cerebral palsy, which went undiagnosed until he had a seizure in high school.

“When he was younger, we just thought he was being a class clown type of dude and couldn’t play the recorder and didn’t wanna do it. He was failing music class because he couldn’t feel the holes (in the recorder),” said Thomas Mayhugh.

The disability impacts Nick Mayhugh’s motor skills on his left side. However, that didn’t stop him from competing as a professional soccer player and elite athlete.

Now, he is an Olympian and a gold medal one at that.

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