London, UK- Canada’s track and field team recorded another top eight performance on the final day of competition at the 2012 Paralympic Games. The team closes out the Games with a total of nine medals, one new Paralympic Games record, seven new Canadian record, 28 top eight performances and 11 personal bests.

“Four years of preparation by our athletes has culminated in nine medals for Canada, and while we think it’s important to live in the moment and enjoy our accomplishments, I know that many are already talking about how they can be even better in Rio” said Laurier Primeau, Paralympic Games Head Coach. “There’s a lot of talk and appreciation for the incredible games that London has hosted, for the unparalleled fan support, and for the great boost that the Paralympic movement has gotten in the media. On the other, thematic in our camp is the notion that we can learn from the London experience and move forward toward improved results in Brazil in 2016.”

Day ten of competition featured three athletes taking part in the T54 classification wheelchair marathon. Diane Roy of Sherbrook, Que., was the top Canadian finishing seventh overall in a time of 1:53:02. “I did all that I could, this summer I put all of my focus into my top speed. So on this course to slow down in the curves and then accelerate again was exhausting, especially after ten days of competition.”

In the men’s T54 wheelchair marathon Josh Cassidy of Ottawa, Ont., placed 12th in a time of 1:33:06. “This is the toughest course I’ve ever done but I gave it everything I had.” After recovering from a crash and having to fix a flat tire Michel Filteau of St. Jean Baptiste, Que., finished 26th in 1:47:39.

Canadian track and field medalists at the 2012 Paralympic Games

Leading the way in the medal is Brent Lakatos of Dorval, Que. In addition to silver medals in the men’s T54 wheelchair 200, 400 and 800-metres, Brent recorded two Canadian records and a personal best in 100-metres where he finished fifth.

World record holder Michelle Stilwell of Nanoose, Bay, B.C., won Canada’s lone gold medal at the Games in the women’s T52 200-metres in a Paralympic Games record time of 33.80 seconds. Stilwell also won silver in the 100-metres, bringing her career Paralympic medal total to four.

Jason Dunkerley and guide Josh Karanja, both of Ottawa, Ont., recorded a pair of podiums with medals in the T11 classification visually impaired 5000-metres (silver) and 1500-metres (bronze). Both podiums were earned in Canadian record times.

Eight athletes on the team made their debut appearance at the Paralympic Games. Among them is double bronze medalist Virginia McLachlan of Windsor, Ont. Virginia won bronze in the T35 classification 100 and 200-metres.

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