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Golden international return for Hynd

5 July 2011

Paralympic champion Sam Hynd won gold as the British Gas GBR Disability Swimming team completed a clean sweep of the men’s S8 400m Freestyle medals on day three of the IPC Swimming European Championships.

It proved a successful race for the Hynd family with Sam’s younger brother Oliver scooping silver in his first international competition while world champion Thomas Young clinched bronze.

World record holder Sam ultimately dominated the final, establishing a 0.5 second lead in the opening 50m and never looking like he would be caught as he swept to a time of 4:29.18.

It was a fantastic race but everything went to plan for me - I felt good out there and I'm happy to have kept my title.

Both Oliver and Young both raised their game for the final, setting personal bests of 4:32.16 and 4:32.70 respectively.

And Sam admitted having his younger brother and the world champion chasing his tail was perfect motivation.

“I’m really chuffed,” Hynd said.  “It was a fantastic race but everything went to plan for me and I felt really good out there and I’m happy to have kept my title.

“The time was good – sub 4:30 is a good time to be hitting. I’m getting back on track now. It was great to have the competition from my two teammates pushing me along as well.”

Heather Frederiksen won her second gold of the Championships, cruising to victory in the S8 400m Freestyle.

I swam fast and I swam comfortably and I broke five minutes so I'm really pleased.

The world record holder wasted no time in establishing a two second lead at the first turn before eventually winning in 4:58.80.

She said afterwards: “It was good to go out there and swim fast and comfortable and still break the five minutes so I am really pleased.”

Emma Hollis knocked more than 2.5 seconds off her personal best as she followed Frederiksen home for silver in 5:24.48 while Charlotte Henshaw clocked 5:39.91 to finish fifth.

The women’s 34 point 4x100m Freestyle relay, which featured Louise Watkin, Lauren Steadman, Claire Cashmore and Susie Rodgers, saw the Brits secure the gold medal with a new European record.

They went into an early lead and commanded the race from there. They dominated the second half of the race to secure their gold medal.

Cashmore brought the girls home in a time of 4:27.53.

World champion Matt Walker defended his European S7 50m Freestyle title with a confident swim in Berlin.

Having qualified in first, Walker powered clear to win in 29.21 with Jonathan Fox repeating his result from the last Europeans, winning silver in 29.81.

Rodgers broke her own British record to bag silver in the S7 50m Freestyle.

International newcomer Rodgers, who won S7 400m Freestyle on day one, touched home in 33.99 to secure silver behind Ani Palian (Ukraine).

The men’s S5 50m Backstroke saw Anthony Stephens win the silver with a time of 42.75.

Eleanor Simmonds won the bronze medal in the women’s S6 50m Freestyle in a race that saw the world record broken. She touched in 36.52. Natalie Jones finished in fourth in 37.76.

European Champion Watkin won the bronze medal in the women’s SB9 100m Breaststroke with a swim that saw her finish in 1:21.73.

International newcomer Hannah Russell won the bronze medal in the women’s S12 100m Butterfly. She broke the British record she set in the heats after reaching for the wall in 1:11.13.

The men’s 34 point 4x100m Freestyle relay, which featured Fox, Sean Fraser, James Crisp and Robert Welbourn, secured bronze with a time of 3:57.79.

Fran Williamson finished just outside of the medals in fourth in a time of 1:08.64 in the women’s 50m Backstroke.

Jack Bridge broke his own British record for the second time today after finishing the final of the men’s SB9 100m Breaststroke in a time of 1:13.64.

National Performance Director John Atkinson said: “The men’s S8 400m Freestyle saw three of our swimmers win the medals and to get a clean sweep at the beginning of the night is a great to start with. It was a quick race and all of the medallists’ times were quicker than at the World Championships last year.

“There were two 1-2s for us, Heather became our first double gold medallist and the 34 point relay was great to end on and it has been good to see so many Brits making the podium. We now have 14 different swimmers with gold medals on their necks and that is a good three days’ work.”

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