MONTREAL – Valérie Grand’Maison of Montreal won silver and Donovan Tildesley of Vancouver and Aurélie Rivard of St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., each added a bronze top open the International Paralympic Committee Swimming World Championships.
In the women’s S13 200-m individual medley, Rebecca Anne Meyer of the U.S., won the gold medal in two minutes and 30.04 seconds. Grand’Maison, the reigning Paralympic Games champion and world record holder, was second in 2:30.12 and Teigan van Roosmalen of Australia third in 2:38.27.
‘’It was very exciting to race at home but I would have liked to win the gold,’’ said Grand’Maison. ‘’I knew that Rebecca and I would be going back and forth in this race. This was a big race of the competition and I felt a lot of pressure to do well.’’
In the women’s S10 100-m freestyle, Sophie Pasco of New Zealand broke her world record for the gold in 1:00.15. Elodie Lorandi of France was second in 1:00.47 and the 17-year-old Rivard followed in 1:01.61. She had clocked a personal best 1:01.43 in the prelims.
‘’I achieved my goal in this event,’’ said Rivard, a silver medallist in the 400-m freestyle at the Paralympics last year. ‘’I’m pleased to have swam a best time today but certainly I was hoping to go faster in the final.’’
In the men’s S11 100-m backstroke for blind swimmers, Dmytro Zalevsky led Ukraine to a 1-2 finish in 1:08.75. Oleksandr Mashchenko was second in 1:12.57 and Tildesley, a 29-year-old veteran of four Paralympic Games, followed in 1:14.38.
‘’My motivation is to get up every morning and put in the metres in the pool,’’ said Tildesley. ‘’Whether I have a good or bad practice I’ve started the day on a positive note. It takes me through the rest of my day.’’
Other Canadian finalists: Brianna Nelson of Victoria was fourth in the S7 400-m freestyle and Katarina Roxon of Stephenville, N.L., seventh in the S7 100-m freestyle.
The event has attracted 480 swimmers from 55 countries and is the biggest gathering of para swimmers since London 2012. Competition continues through to Sunday at Parc Jean-Drapeau with preliminaries at 9 a.m. and finals at 5 p.m.
Full results, schedule and start lists at: http://www.paralympic.org/events/montreal-2013/live-results