Weir Victorious in 13th Tyne Tunnel 2K
Dave ‘The Weirwolf’ Weir powered to victory last night in the 13th Tyne Tunnel 2K International wheelchair race beating defending champion, Josh Cassidy of Canada, into second place.
Special guest Esther McVey, Minister for Disabled People, sounded the horn to start the two kilometre race under the river after the Northbound Tyne Tunnel was closed to traffic at 8.35pm and it became a temporary race track for 18 international wheelchair racers from Britain, Spain, Canada and Australia.
Josh Cassidy had the advantage on the 1km in 20 downhill to the belly of the Tyne. He has won the TT2K for the past three years and knows how to get his speeds up to in excess of 45mph. Josh did indeed get to the midpoint of the river ahead of the field.
But David Weir was in fine form a year on from his London 2012 four gold medal haul and reeled in the Canadian to pass him half way up the shoulder burning 1km climb up to the North Portal finish line and the cheering crowds, in a time of 4 minutes 2.5 seconds, 22 seconds ahead of the Canadian.
17 year old Jade Jones from Middlesbrough was the only female taking part, finishing an impressive seventh place in a time of 5 minutes and 59.1 seconds.
Rachel Turnbull Chief Executive of TT2, the Tyne Tunnels Operator, said “The 13th Tyne Tunnel 2K is hands down the best race we have seen yet. TT2 is proud to play host to this incredible Paralympic Legacy event.”
Baroness Tanni Grey Thompson, start co-ordinator for the race said, “The Tyne Tunnel 2K is an incredibly tough and challenging race, there is nothing quite like it anywhere else in the world. It’s great for wheelchair racing and it’s great for the north east”
Full results are available HERE