Aussie hero's never-before-seen feat lights up Commonwealth Games

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Australia's Madison de Rozario claimed a fourth Commonwealth Games gold medal after  winning the women's T53-54 1500m. Pic: Getty/Ch7
Australia's Madison de Rozario claimed a fourth Commonwealth Games gold medal after winning the women's T53-54 1500m. Pic: Getty/Ch7

Australian para athlete Madison de Rozario has raced into the record books after claiming gold in the women's T53-54 1500m at the Commonwealth Games to complete a stunning first for the nation.

Five days after opening the athletics program in Birmingham with a dominant win in the marathon, de Rozario made it a golden double with victory in the 1500m.

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The 29-year-old clocked a winning time of three minutes 53.03 seconds to claim her third major championships golden double.

De Rozario has now won the 1500m-marathon double at the 2018 and 2022 Commonwealth Games and the 800m-marathon double at last year's Tokyo Paralympics to cement her status as one of the most dominant para athletes of this generation.

The extraordinary feat in Birmingham also saw De Rozario become the first Australian para athlete in history to win four Commonwealth Games gold medals.

"You try and look at each race in isolation, you can't let whatever happens before colour it too much," she said.

"But to get to retain a title is always a privilege."

De Rozario went straight to the front in Thursday's title race, varying the pace and daring her opponents to find a way past.

None of them could.

Aussie para stars storm home in one-two finish

The 29-year-old clocked a winning time of three minutes 53.03 seconds, with fellow Aussie Angie Ballard storming home to finish second in 3:53.30, ahead of Scotland's Samantha Kingshorn.

"That was a cagey race and it got a bit tricky towards the end; I'm happy to come away with that one," said de Rozario, whose focus was primarily on the marathon in the lead-up to Birmingham.

"I've not done a lot of track work and the track is so technical, you get out of the habits of it.

"I didn't nail it out there, I made a few mistakes, but it all came together and I was really happy with it.

"It's a different type of confidence you have to have (racing from the front).

"You can't second-guess yourself in that moment; if there's one mistake then it's all gone."

Seen here, Australian para athlete Madison de Rozario poses with one of her two gold medals from the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
Australian para athlete Madison de Rozario poses with one of her two gold medals from the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Pic: Getty

The physical toll from De Rozario's epic marathon victory looked to have set in as the Aussie's rivals closed the gap midway through the race.

"About maybe 600 metres into my warm-up, I was like, 'Oh no, I'm definitely still feeling those 42kms in the arms today'. So, definitely brought that with me out there."

However, the 29-year-old - coached by Aussie para legend Louise Sauvage - found another gear to kick ahead and clinch her slice of history.

"I definitely lost it for a little bit there. Angie came home so strong and Sam's last 300 [metres] was incredible. [I'm] so happy I just managed to hold on to win," de Rozario said.

De Rozario said the win was made even more special because she got to share the podium with her teammate, Ballard.

"She has been in my corner since day one. We've been to four Paralympic Games together and to get to do this is it's amazing," she added.

with AAP

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