26 March 2013Jonnie Peacock ready to take Pistorius mantle
The 19 year old shot to fame at the Paralympic Games last summer when he triumphed over Pistorius to take gold in the T44 100m final, becoming an overnight celebrity.
Sir Philip Craven, president of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) had earlier given his backing to Jonnie Peacock, naming him as one of the many talented young athletes who could emerge to represent the Paralympic movement, along with Brazilian Alan Oliveira, who famously beat Pistorius over 200m, causing the South African to give an outspoken interview after the race complaining about the length of his rival’s prosthetic blades.
Peacock said that he'd do anything he could because he cares about paralympic sport and athletics a lot.
“I'm open to the idea. There's also lots of other great athletes. I'd be willing to help if that's what's required and I'm sure all the athletes would. We need to get it out there. We've got big names and the sport will move on. It's just about making sure that they choose the next person quickly and start using them well," he said.
Craven, in a letter to members of the IPC, attempted to play down the impact of the Pistorius situation on the future of the Paralympic movement.
He said: "It has changed since the summer and we've many new stars coming through. I've been amazed over the last six months how fresh and bright those memories from London still are in people's minds. This is a major tragedy but we have to differentiate it away from Paralympic sport and the Paralympic movement and what will happen in Sochi and in Rio."
He added: "When you have people like Alan Oliveira, Jonnie Peacock, who are 21 and 19 – they are the future of the movement. There are so many names on people's lips that we are still in a very strong position."
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