Dunn takes historic silver in first-ever S14 100m Butterfly in TokyoAugust 25, 2021
The first finals session of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games brought much medal success for the ParlamypicsGB swimmers.
A silver medal from Reece Dunn in the Men’s S14 100m Butterfly saw him winning his first Paralympic medal at what is his debut Games.
The Plymouth Leander swimmer’s podium finish is made even more special by the fact that this event is a new addition to the Paralympic schedule.
His time of 55.12 took down the Paralympic Record time of 55.99 he set in the morning heats.
Speaking after his race, Dunn said: “Obviously I’m happy about it, a little disappointment in my finish – I lost it there but I’m still happy nonetheless.
“I knew it was going to be a tough race coming in, I knew it was going to go to the last 5 metres or so but he beat me to it.
“I’m quite happy with it, obviously a little disappointed to be so far off my PB.”
Kearney takes silver
Tully Kearney finished second in the Women’s S5 200m Freestyle in what was an extremely hard-fought race.
Going out hard, Kearney was under world record pace at the 100m mark, showing utter commitment to the race.
China’s Zhang just pipped Kearney to the wall in the final 5 metres, finishing just 0.12 ahead of Kearney.
The City of Manchester Aquatics athlete took a significant chunk off her morning swim time of 2:52.30 to finish in second with 2:46.65 – a lifetime best for the 24-year-old.
Reflecting on her performance, she said: “There was a question mark over whether I’d be able to get to a Paralympic Games so the fact that I’ve been able to race and come away with a medal is crazy.
“Any athlete is going to be disappointed if they don’t win but I think considering everything that I’ve been through, the lack of training that I’ve had due to injury, I can’t complain.
“I wasn’t actually expecting to be able to swim that quick so I’m pretty happy with that.
“It is frustrating losing out by that much but I am really happy with that.
Suzanna Hext narrowly missed out on a bronze medal in the same event with a strong time of 2:59.55.
Opening medal for Shaw
Toni Shaw secured the first medal of the competition with a superb bronze in the Women’s S9 400m Freestyle final.
The Aberdeen-based athlete finished in a lifetime best time of 4:39.32, shaving a massive seven seconds off her heats time of 4:46.19.
Elsewhere in the pool, Louise Fiddes and Jessica-Jane Applegate finished in fifth and sixth, respectively, in the Women’s 100m Butterfly final with times of 1:07.24 and 1:07.69.