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Simmonds continues to shine in London

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3rd September 2012

Ellie Simmonds continued her blistering form at London 2012 with an SM6 200m Individual Medley world records in the heats on day five.

Having defended her S6 400m Freestyle title in a world record earlier in the Games, the 17-year old starred again in the Aquatics Centre as she knocked more than 1.5 seconds off her old marker to lead qualifiers in 3:06.97.

I wasn’t actually going for a world record this morning, I was going for the Paralympic record.

Simmonds was lying second through the first 150m but stormed past Ukraine’s Oksana Khrul in the final freestyle leg to take the touch.

But the Brit was adamant she hadn’t gone out to chase the world record in the heats.

“I wasn’t actually going for a world record this morning, I was going for the Paralympic record which was 3:13,” said Simmonds.

“I was just going out to get a feel for it all again but the crowd definitely gives you a big buzz and I can’t wait to race again tonight in front of the crowd.

“I’m quite shocked with that time though. I couldn’t quite see what time it was and I had to ask someone but I’m really pleased with such a big PB in the heats.”

Natalie Jones and Liz Johnson will join Simmonds in the final after qualifying second and seventh fastest respectively.

As long as I’m in the final, that’s fine and if I can get on the medal podium tonight I’ll be more than happy.

Competing in her first event of the Games, Paralympic SB6 100m Breaststroke champion Johnson was just 0.02 off her season’s best as she finished in 3:29.22.

Meanwhile, former world and Paralympic champion Jones impressed with a 3:16.41 effort and insisted she is capable of going faster in tonight’s final.

“I was hoping to do about that time this morning, maybe slightly quicker,” said Jones.

“As long as I’m in the final, that’s fine and if I can get on the medal podium tonight I’ll be more than happy.”

Sascha Kindred will go for a fourth consecutive SM6 200m Individual Medley gold after qualifying fastest from the heats.

I was a bit disappointed with Saturday so I had to focus on picking myself up to be strong for today.

The world record holder eased through his heat in 2:44.29 to book lane four for the final.

And while he missed out on the defence of his SB7 100m Breaststroke title earlier in the week, Kindred admitted the support he had received after had inspired him to bounce back today.  

“I was a bit disappointed with Saturday so I had to focus on picking myself up to be strong for today,” said Kindred.

“I had lots of good luck messages from parents of kids with my disability who have said I’m a role model for them.

“And those kind of messages have really helped me pick myself back up again and helped me perform today.”

Having won S6 400m Freestyle bronze on day two in London, Matt Whorwood joined Kindred in the final as he set a personal best 2:53.82 to finish third in his heat and qualify fifth fastest.

I wasn’t thinking about medalling but qualifying second is pretty good and I can’t complain about a two second PB.

Jonathan Fox will compete for a second medal of the Games after qualifying second fastest in the S7 100m Freestyle.

The European champion, who won ParalympicsGB’s first gold in the pool in the S7 100m Backstroke, sliced more than a second off his personal best as he came home in 1:02.47.

“The 50m and 100 Free aren’t really my main events so I want to go out and enjoy them,” said Fox.

“So I wasn’t thinking about medalling in either of them but qualifying second is pretty good and I can’t complain about a two second PB.”

Competing in his first event of his Paralympic debut, 15-year old Josef Craig was just 0.07 seconds shy of his personal best as he clocked 1:04.00 to progress fourth fastest to join Fox in the S7 100m Freestyle final.

Susie Rodgers booked a spot in her third final of the Games as she finished second fastest from the heats of the S7 100m Freestyle.

The European champion won her heat in 1:12.86, touching just 0.76 seconds off her British record to progress.

James Anderson also reached the final in his first event of his sixth consecutive Paralympic Games.

The 17-time Paralympic medallist was less than a second shy of his season’s best as he clocked a morning swim of 2:27.43 to go through seventh fastest in the S2 100m Freestyle.

Finally, Thomas Young continued his record-breaking form in London as he clocked a one-second personal best to make the S8 50m Freestyle final.

The 21-year old ducked under Sean Fraser’s British record to finish in 27.81 and progress joint seventh into his third individual final of the Games.

Fraser clocked a season’s best 28.20 but missed out on the final, finishing 11th overall.

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