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Danielle Huskisson wins 5km gold at European Open Water Champs

Danielle Huskisson won the biggest prize of her career with 5km gold at the 2016 European Open Water Championships.

The English swimmer clocked 59:46.1 to win the time trial event in Hoorn by more than six seconds.

Germany’s Finnia Wunram was second on 59:52.4 while the Netherlands’ Sharon Van Rouwendaal (59:54.9) was the only other swimmer to finish under an hour.

It was Huskisson’s second swim of the Championships, having impressed to place eighth in the mass start 10km on Sunday.

But the 23-year old was in a class of her own in the time trial, clocking 2500m splits of 31:09.1 and 28:37.0.

“To win here is a great surprise for me,” said Huskisson. “I did not expect that as I prefer to swim in a group like in the 10km.

“It’s funny to go to the water with starting number one and finish the race first.”

It was a successful day for the British swimmers in Hoorn, with Caleb Hughes landing bronze in the men’s event.

Enough to qualify for the Olympic Games

Huskisson did enough to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, finishing ninth in the Olympic Qualification Tournament in June.

But with only one athlete per country permitted to compete in Rio, British and English teammate Keri-anne Payne – who finished second in the Qualification Tournament – was selected.

But Huskisson has reacted in emphatic style, winning the elite race at the Great East Swim before her European triumph.

Image credit: G. Perottino / Deepbluemedia