The Straits Times
Published on Sep 06, 2012

Paralympics: Zanardi triumphs amid multiple medallists


LONDON (AFP) - Former racing driver Alessandro Zanardi on Wednesday won Paralympic gold at a circuit where he once drove high powered cars, as the showpiece "Battle of the Blade Runners" took shape on the track.

It was also a day for multiple medallists, as the most-decorated male Paralympian took gold again in his ninth Games and Australia got a new star in the pool.

The 45-year-old Zanardi's win in the individual H4 (hand-cycle) time-trial at Brands Hatch was a triumph for the Italian former Formula One driver, who was critically injured and had both legs amputated after a horror smash in 2001.

He battled back into motorsport, even competing in a touring car race at the fabled southeast England circuit in a specially-adapted car with hand controls, before switching his efforts to hand-cycling.