Double gold for Canada at Paralympic swimming worlds
Canadians take home five medals Thursday
Montreal natives Benoit Huot and Valerie Grand'Maison each won gold Thursday to highlight a five-medal performance for Canada at the International Paralympic Committee swimming world championships.
Aurelie Rivard of St-Jean-sur Richelieu, Que., added silver then helped Canada's 4x100 freestyle women's relay to another second place finish.
Sarah Mehain of Vernon, B.C., also won a bronze, giving Canada three gold, four silver and four bronze after four days of competition.
In the men's 200-metre individual medley in the S10 disability category, Huot clocked two minutes 10.34, just 0.33 set off his world record set at his fourth Paralympic Games last year. Andre Brasil of Brazil was second in 2:13.19 and Ian Silverman of the U.S., third in 2:14.42. Isaac Bouckley of Port Hope, Ont., was seventh.
"Nearing the end of my career I really wanted to enjoy this competition," said Huot. "I wanted to live this experience with my friends and also help increase the awareness of Paralympic sport. I wish I could have broken that world record but in that last 25 metres I was really hurting."
Grand'Maison and Rivard each collected their third individual medal of the competition.
In the women's S13 50 freestyle for visually impaired, Grand'Maison took the world title in 27.96. Anna Krivshina of Russia was second in 28.00 and Elena Krawzow of Germany was third in 29.21.
"That was the hardest 50 freestyle in my life," said Grand'Maison, just 0.08 seconds off her national record. "It was hard to refocus after last night's gold but I just told myself it's one length and try not to breathe too much. My start wasn't the best so I had to play catch up."
The 17-year-old Rivard continued to amaze clocking a personal best 2:33.68 to tie for second with Kathrine Downie of Australia. Nina Ryabova of Russia won the race in 2:30.71.
In the women's 4x100 freestyle relay, Rivard, Morgan Bird of Calgary, Katarina Roxon of Stephenville, N.L., and Brianna Nelson of Victoria clocked a Canadian record 4:35.41 for second spot behind a powerful British foursome.
Mehain earned her first major international medal placing third in the S7 50 backstroke in a personal best 1:29.43. Kirsten Bruhn of Germany was the winner in 1:23.99 and Cortney Jordan of the U.S. second in 1:25.32.
Competitors in classifications S1 through S10 have a physical limitation, while classifications S11 through S13 are for competitors with a visual impairment. A lower number indicates a more severe condition.
Competition continues until Sunday.