Host team China may have brought in two gold medals at the javelin events on the first day of the Paralympic athletic competitions yesterday, but Oscar Pistorius of South Africa stole the spotlight at the Bird's Nest.
Although the men's 100m T44 final is today, Pistorius still managed to steal the thunder from China's javelin gold medalists during the first round of the men's 100m T44 competition last night.
Known as "Blade Runner", the double amputee world record holder in the 100m, 200m and 400m events easily qualified for today's 100m T44 finals by ranking first. The 21-year-old has so far broken 26 world records running on artificial carbon limbs.
"My aim in the final is a new world record," said Pistorius. "The gold medal is what I want for the final, and if I could break the record, it would be a memorable race."
Nine countries shared the 10 gold medals on offer in the athletics events.
China's Yao Juan claimed the first athletics gold medal by winning the women's javelin F42-46 in the morning.
"I'm very proud to win the first gold at the Bird's Nest in this Paralympics, and I also broke my own world record," said Yao, who only restarted training two months ago after suffering an injury.
"I naturally have a competitive spirit. I never give up. I have always wanted to win back this gold medal, which I lost in Athens four years ago."
Silver went to Andrea Hegen from Germany, and bronze was taken by Medeleine Hogan from Australia.
Guo Wei from China added the second athletics gold for the host after winning the men's javelin F35/36 in the evening session.
"I performed pretty well today, and I did as well as I could do in training," said Guo, who also set a new world record of 56.07 meters.
Pawel Piotrowski from Poland took silver while Nicholas Newman of South Africa won bronze.
Triple jumper Osamah Alshanqiti won the first gold medal in Olympic history for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the men's triple jump F12 with a world record jump of 15.37m.
In other events, Leonardo Diaz of Cuba took the gold at men's discus F55/56 while Aigars Apinis of Latvia crowned in the F33/34/52 class of the event.