Jonnie Peacock: Paralympic champion 'laps up' 100m rivalry

Paralympic champion Jonnie Peacock has welcomed the challenge of losing his 100m T43/T44 world record to Brazilian Alan Oliveira.

Peacock's time of 10.85 seconds, set last year, was beaten by Oliveira's 10.77 in Berlin two weeks ago.

"People are running faster this year than they were last year which is great," he told BBC Look East.

Quickest 100m T43/T44 times

  • Alan Oliveira (Bra) - 10.77 seconds, 15 June 2013
  • Jonnie Peacock (GB) - 10.85, 1 July 2012
  • Oscar Pistorius (SA) - 10.91, 4 April 2007
  • Blake Leeper (USA) - 10.91, 14 July 2012

"I'll quite happily lap up these guys running fast - it pushes me along and makes me become a better athlete."

Peacock competes in the T44, for athletes who are single below-the-knee amputees, but the classification is often combined with Oliveira's T43, for double below-the-knee amputees.

The 20-year-old from Doddington, near Cambridge, beat Oliveira into seventh at the Paralympic Games last summer.

American Richard Browne, silver medallist in London, has also showed he can close the gap on Peacock by matching the Briton's record earlier in the month, although this was not recognised as an official time as it came in an event not sanctioned by the International Paralympic Committee.

While Peacock's rivals have been improving their times, the British sprinter has been concentrating on his return from an ankle operation performed after the Games and adapting to a new, shorter blade.

He also made the decision to return to the UK after deciding to abandon plans to train in the United States with coach Dan Pfaff.

Peacock's progress

Jonnie Peacock
  • Born: 28 May, 1993
  • 1998: Has right leg amputated
  • 2008: Attends Paralympic talent identification event
  • 2010: Fifth in first Paralympic World Cup race
  • 2011: Breaks T44 100m European record
  • 2012: Lowers T44 100m world record to 10.85 seconds, before winning Paralympic gold in a Games-record time

"It's going to be an interesting year for me," he said.

"I've moved coaches and location, there's a lot of change for me and I had an ankle operation after the Paralympics.

"I basically got no winter whatsoever, so we're trying to compress the whole year down into six months. It will be tricky but interesting at the same time."

The signs were promising in his first race since the Paralympics, winning the 100m at the the Great CityGames in Manchester in 11.46 seconds.

Peacock will lead the field at Saturday's IPC Grand Final in Birmingham before rekindling his world-class rivalry with Oliveira and Browne at the World Championships in Lyon next month.

And while medals will be his priority, Peacock is convinced he can continue to set record times.

"If anybody said 'Jonnie, you're 19, you've run 10.85', I would doubt very much that's the fastest I'm ever going to go," he added.

I expect to go a lot faster than that, but it's about how well training goes and whether or not I get a lucky wind."