Canadian wheelchair racer Brent Lakatos wins silver in men's T54 5,000m
Rivard wins swimming gold, Canada's 1st of Games; Tuomela finishes 5th in triathlon
One of Canada's top Paralympians has come through with another medal.
Wheelchair racer Brent Lakatos, 41, of Dorval, Que., captured silver in the men's T54 5,000-metre final on Saturday.
Lakatos raced methodically, holding firm in the middle of the pack for much of the race. The field remained closely contested for the duration of the race before Lakatos made his move in the second last lap.
Despite Lakatos leading throughout the final lap, it was Switzerland's Marcel Hug — the reigning European champion and Rio 2016 silver medallist in the discipline — who would reclaim the lead to win by mere metres as the race concluded.
"Normally, I think I would have been able to hold on there, but it's so hot here. And I did hold on quite well," Lakatos said after the race. "There was only one guy who was able to pass me and [Hug] was in phenomenal shape."
WATCH | What you missed on Day 4 of competition in Tokyo:
Thailand's Putharet Khongrak, who led momentarily in the early laps, held on to secure bronze.
The silver raises Lakatos' career Paralympic medal tally to eight, marking his first in the 5,000-metre distance, and signals the start of a busy Games for him.
In Tokyo, Lakatos is scheduled to race in every distance, from 100-metre to marathon.
"I've already had some sandwiches," he said. "But any food that I can get in me right now is good. I'm going to get to bed as soon as I can."
Through four days at the Tokyo Paralympics, Canada has won a total of eight medals.
WATCH | Lakatos races to silver in men's T54 5,000m final:
Canada's Tuomela finishes 5th in Para triathlon
On a stifling hot day in Tokyo, Para triathlete Jessica Tuomela placed an impressive fifth at the Paralympics on Saturday in Japan.
Led by guide Marianne Hogan, the 38-year-old crossed the finish line in one hour 12 minutes 53 seconds in the PTVI1 category, which is reserved for fully blind athletes.
Tuomela's latest race comes 21 years after her only Paralympic medal — silver, won as a swimmer in the 50-metre freestyle in 2000.
"We worked really hard and I think we executed as well as we could," Tuomela said. "The swim was awesome, and the bike was incredible. The run wasn't quite what I wanted it to be, but this is the Paralympic Games, and it is nothing to shake a stick at."
Spain's Susana Rodriguez won gold in 1:07:15, while Italy's Anna Barbaro took silver at 1:11:11 and France's Annouck Curzillat brought home bronze with a time of 1:11:45.
Tuomela, the Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., native, who now resides in Victoria, competed in three Paralympics from 2000 to 2008 as a swimmer, only earning that one podium finish.
But she felt as though she had unfinished business.
"Instead of training for one sport, I thought, 'Why not [train] for three?'" she told the Times of India recently.
Hogan, a 31-year-old from Montreal, became Tuomela's guide in 2019 and quickly earned a trio of third-place finishes, including bronze at that year's world championships in Switzerland.
But it wasn't to be on Saturday. Tuomela looked to be in good shape early, emerging from the 750-metre swim in second place and maintaining that position over 20 kilometres on a tandem bike with Hogan. It was the five-kilometre run where Tuomela fell back at the Odaiba Marine Park on another stiflingly hot day in Tokyo.
Canadians shine in the pool
Canadian swimmer Aurélie Rivard claimed the first gold medal for the country at the Tokyo Aquatic Centre on Saturday. Rivard had a superb performance in the women's S10 100-metre freestyle, racing to the end in 58.14 seconds.
You can read more about her world record-setting swims and title defence here.
WATCH | Rivard takes gold with world-record setting performance:
Also in the pool, Canada's Camille Bérubé placed eighth in the women's SB6 100-metre breaststroke final. She posted a time of one minute 44.07 seconds. Maisie Summers-Newton of Great Britain took the gold in a Paralympic record of 1:32.34.
One day after coming fifth in the women's SM7 200-metre individual medley, Bérubé broke a Canadian record in her qualifying heat. Competing in her third Paralympics, she finished in 1:42.80.
Meanwhile, Canada's Danielle Kisser also competed in the event, but did not advance to the finals. She came sixth in her heat with a time of 1:49.04.
While Nikita Ens came last in her heat of the women's SM4 150-metre individual medley event, she also emerged with a new Canadian record.
Ens, 32, from Saskatchewan, finished the race in 4:34.01 to place sixth in her heat in her Paralympic debut.
Canada's Tammy Cunnington also competed in the same event, placing fifth in her qualifying heat with a time of 3:41.06.
Matthew Cabraja of Canada swam a personal best time in the S11 100-metre backstroke qualifier, placing fifth in his heat with a time of 1:13.98.
Ouellet falls off in men's T12 5,000m
Canada's Guillaume Ouellet led for much of the men's T12 5,000-metre on Saturday, but faded over the final kilometre to place fifth.
Ouellet, of Victoriaville, Que., made his move early to lead the pack, but was slowly overtaken by athlete after athlete over the final 1,200 metres or so.
The 34-year-old finished with a time of 14:47.47. He placed fourth in the event for the partially blind five years ago in Rio.
Spain's Yassine Ouhdad El Ataby took gold at 14:34.13, with Australia's Jaryd Clifford claiming silver (14:35.52) and Russian Aleksander Kostin earning bronze (14:37.42).
Ouellet won the event at the 2015 world championships and took third in 2017, but has never reached a major international tournament podium otherwise.
Canadian goalball women edged by Australia
The Canadian goalball team fell to 1-2 with its 4-3 loss against Australia on Saturday.
Emma Reinke, coming off a four-goal performance in Canada's lone win, scored another pair in the loss.
Australia's Meica Jayne Horsburgh was responsible for all of her side's goals, including a penalty tally that ultimately stood as the winner.
The top four teams in each pool reach the quarter-finals. Canada now sits fourth in its group, tied with an Australian team that previously lost by 11-1 and 6-0 margins.
Canada's final match comes against China on Monday at 1:45 a.m ET.
WATCH | Canada falls to Australia in goalball:
Canadian boccia star Alison Levine got a winning start in Tokyo, taking her opening match against Martin Streharsky of Slovakia.
The Montreal athlete won 4-3, with all three of Streharsky's points coming in the third end. Levine enters the competition ranked No. 1 in the world in her classification, BC4.
Levine will next play Lau Wai Yan Vivian of Hong Kong on Sunday.
Meanwhile, two fellow Canadians lost their openers to Portugal players: Canada's Danik Allard was defeated 8-4 by Cristina Goncalves in the BC2 class, while Iulian Ciobanu of Canada dropped his match 3-2 to Carla Oliveira in the BC4 class.
Wheelchair basketball teams defeated
Canada's women's wheelchair basketball team played to a heartbreaking loss against Germany on Saturday.
Despite trailing by 10 at halftime, the Canadians rallied in the final frame.
Through Cindy Oulett, Canada drew level at 52 with minutes remaining after Germany experienced foul trouble.
The Germans would reclaim a late lead they wouldn't relinquish, but the drama ensued with three seconds remaining.
Canada's Kady Dandeneau missed a field goal, but a follow-up attempt from Puisand Lai was sunk and appeared to beat the buzzer.
WATCH | Women's wheelchair basketball loses heartbreaker to Germany:
Following a tense review, officials determined the shot came after time had expired — meaning the Canadian women were dealt their first loss in Tokyo.
"We never stopped playing ... we believed. From the beginning to the end, we never stopped believing, so that's good," said Canadian coach Marc Antoine Ducharme after the game.
They now sit 2-1 in preliminary play.
Meanwhile, for a time it seemed Canada's men's wheelchair basketball team would get its first win in Tokyo — and against host Japan, too. Canada was on top for the majority of the game, at one point building an 11-point lead.
But Japan came back in the fourth quarter, outscoring Canada and eventually taking the win 62-56. The team remains undefeated with three wins.
Canada is currently in fifth of the Group A standings with three losses. Patrick Anderson scored 22 points in the game and had 12 rebounds. Nikola Goncin notched 20 points and 13 rebounds.
The Canadian men play Korea at 4 a.m. ET on Sunday.
WATCH | Men's wheelchair basketball team falls to 0-3:
Canada finishes up in wheelchair fencing
Two Canadian athletes — Sylvie Morel of Pincourt, Que., and Matthieu Hébert of Beauharnois, Que., — finished up competing in Tokyo in their foil events on Saturday.
Morel started out with a win over Brazil's Carminha Oliveira, but lost her next four bouts in the women's Class A division. In the men's Class A division, Hébert also lost his four bouts.
Para rowing repechages
Canada's PR3 mixed coxed four team placed fourth in its repechage heat, finishing in seven minutes 15.81 seconds. They'll miss the chance to compete for medals and will instead compete in the B finals on Sunday.
The Canadian PR2 mixed double sculls team of Jessye Brockway and Jeremy Hall also competed on Sunday, placing fifth in a repechage. The duo will also compete in a B finals.
WATCH | 5 Canadian Paralympians you should know:
With files from Christine Rankin, Myles Dichter, Dion Caputi