T52 men's 400 m gold medalist Tomoki Sato was back Sunday in the T52 1500 m, squaring off again vs. American Raymond Martin as the two favorites for gold on day three of track and field action at the Tokyo Paralympics. Martin was expected to take it out hard, but instead he immediately tucked in behind Sato, who had outkicked him at the last second in the 400 m. Sato was forced to lead the entire way, but when Martin would have been expected to kick coming off the final corner Sato had an extra gear, taking gold in a Paralympic record 3:29.13.
Martin was in the silver position again 3:29.72, with Japan's Hirokazu Ueyonabaru soloing a 3:44.17 for bronze, replicating the medal podium from the 400 m. Sato's Paralympic record was less than a second off the Olympic 1500 m record set in Tokyo by Norway's Jakob Ingebrigtsen. What a great head-to-head race that would be.
The only other Japanese athlete active in a final, Uran Sawada placed 5th in the T12 women's long jump. Sawada jumper 5.15 m (+0.0) on her fourth attempt, leaving her 0.18 m out of the medals.
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