David Weir is simply unstoppable. A performance of iron-clad confidence and control brought him an extraordinary third gold medal of the Games on Thursday night, cementing his position as the world's leading wheelchair athlete and leaving his rivals shattered.
Weir shadowed the leader, China's Zhang Lixin, from the gun, tucking in second out of lane seven, and never lost that prime position until he ripped off the final bend to win the T54 800m in 1min 37.63sec as the stadium erupted in joy and the DJ spun Werewolf in London, his signature tune.
"I had to dig deep tonight, it did hurt," said Weir, whose suit came undone on the first lap. "They're all special. I've defended my title in both the distances I've won and now I've got a gold in the 5,000; I only got bronze in Beijing. I feel like I'm on top of the world at the moment.
"I dreamt about it and wished I'd come away with three gold medals, with maybe another one on the way, but you just dream of things like that."
Switzerland's Marcel Hug, the world record holder and Weir's great rival, kicked late for silver while bronze went to Thailand's Saichon Konjen.
Just like at the Olympics, some medals are softer than others here. In the T12 5,000m on Monday night, to pick one example, the silver medallist could afford to come home a full 26sec behind the world record set by the winner, Morocco's El Amin Chentouf.
None of Weir's fall remotely into that category. His opponents are hardened, elite racers, toughened by a professional circuit of marathons and track events. These victories are every bit as difficult as those of Mo Farah, his only serious rival for athlete of the summer, last month.
Hug, beaten by Weir for the third final of these Games on Thursday night, is the world record holder at four distances from 800m to 10,000m. Weir's season's best was the third-fastest in the race. But, just like Farah in August, when the east African stars bordered on supine in their tactics against him, sometimes an athlete turns up at a major championships holding what amounts to a hex, a psychological edge that, after the first victory, makes the competition freeze up. Weir has got them beaten before the gun goes and Sunday's marathon, and his chance for a fourth gold, may well confirm it.
While Weir's rivals are tough, Hannah Cockroft's must wonder why they bother turning up. The 20-year-old added gold by a huge margin in the 200m to her unfeasibly dominant 100m triumph on the opening night of competition. Cockroft's time, a Paralympic record of 31.90, tells nothing of a winning margin that may have approached 10 chair-lengths.
Powering off from the staggered start, she had caught two athletes outside her within 30m and never looked back.
Was it ever in doubt? "I was in doubt on that one," Cockroft said after collecting her medal. "Even my coach had a bit of doubt on that one. Even though the 200 is my favourite event it's also a lot of the other girls' favourite and best events, and they all said, 'Yeah, we're coming to get you on this one.'
"I hit the fastest speed I've hit during these Games in that race and can't complain – Paralympic record. But the gold medal's what I wanted and that's what I got."
From a team who picked up a measly two golds – both from Weir – in Beijing, Thursday alone saw eight British medals in track and field.
Dan Greaves, Discus Dan to his Twitter followers, looked nailed on for gold in the F44 having thrown a Paralympic record 59.01m until the American Jeremy Campbell nailed him with a fourth attempt of 60.05. Greaves, who competed for GB's able-bodied team alongside Farah as a junior, had two more goes at bettering that but could not go further than 57.67.
Ben Rushgrove, the British sprinter who waded into the blades controversy this week by telling Oscar Pistorius he should "acknowledge that he is disabled", ran his lungs out for a bronze in the T36 200m in a personal best of 24.83. Rushgrove was ecstatic, having been run out of the medals in the 100m earlier in the week. "I wanted that medal so badly, so badly. After the disappointment of the 100 I had to prove I'm still one of the top guys in the world."
That was swiftly followed by another bronze for Britain's Paul Blake in the T36 800m to add to his silver in the 400m on Tuesday night. Ola Abidogun picked up another bronze for GB in the men's T46 100m and in the morning session Bev Jones won her first Paralympic medal in four Games' worth of trying with bronze in the F37 discus.
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