Paralympics: Payton rewarded with golden hat-trick

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The Independent Online
Stephen Payton continued to defy doctors' advice to give up running and completed a hat-trick of victories as Britain moved closer to the top of the medals table at the Paralympic Games in Atlanta.

The Scottish university student's success in the 200 metres T37 event on the seventh day of competition in the Olympic Stadium brought one of six gold medals that lifted Britain's tally to 26 and fourth place in the overall table. The British are only three golds behind the leaders, Australia, and have a number of strong events to come before the Games end tomorrow.

Payton, a 19-year-old from Livingston in West Lothian who has partial cerebral palsy, added his latest gold to a 400m world record and victory in the 100m. He won the 200m in 24.34sec, with Douglas Amador of Brazil second in 25.18.

Payton, who is competing in his first Paralympics, said: "It really is a dream come true because at the start of the year I really didn't think I was going to make it into the team. I was still getting back after injury and both training and my times weren't that great. I can't actually believe I have got three gold medals."

Jo Jackson, a 24-year-old single-armed amputee, also has three golds after adding an individual win to her collection from the equestrian events. Britain also picked up an equestrian team gold after a protest against the original winners, Germany, was upheld. The Germans plan to appeal.

The bowlers Irene Cheer and Vera Moore both won, and the Scottish swimmer Jim Anderson took his second gold of the Games in the 50m backstroke.

The latest day of competition saw heavy rain and storms wipe out several events, lightning damaging the official scoreboard at the Olympic Stadium.

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