Paralympian Madison de Rozario has made history as the first Australian woman to win the New York Marathon. The athlete won the women’s wheelchair race after earning Gold earlier this year at Tokyo’s Paralympic Marathon.
De Rozario, who hails from Perth, said the win felt “unreal”. She finished the marathon almost three minutes before her closest competitor Tatyana McFadden.
“New York is one that I’ve never had amazing results on. It’s been my least successful event, and my least successful consistently,” said De Rozario.
“But the two years we weren’t travelling, we buried ourselves in base work and strength work, and it’s paid off, not just here but in Tokyo.”
De Rozario, 27, is only the third Australian overall to have won a division of the New York Marathon.
“I was definitely nervous,” she told The Guardian.
“I knew I could do the 42km. I knew the fitness was still there, but without the prep, you don’t know how you’re going to react to things, or how you’re going to take control of variables.
The athlete’s coach, Australian Paralympic wheelchair racer Louise Sauvage, told The Australian she was blown away by de Rozario’s performance.
“She is very resilient, and we’ve worked so hard on getting her to that standard. All credit to her, she’s just so strong, really mentally strong,” she said.
De Rozario was initially unsure if she would even be able to participate in the marathon in light of COVID-19 restrictions and border closures. However, Australia’s announcement that borders would be opened on November 1 spelled fortune for the athlete. She was fortunately able to make the trip at the last minute.
The win will be the second marathon victory for de Rozario after her success in London in 2018.
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