MONTREAL – Benoit Huot made a sparkling debut and Aurélie Rivard and Valérie Grand’Maison are on track for a third medal following Thursday’s preliminaries at the International Paralympic Committee Swimming World Championships at Parc Jean-Drapeau.
Huot, the world record holder in the event from Montreal, clocked the fastest time in the S10 disability category 200-m individual medley finishing in 2:16.09, more than three seconds faster than his closest pursuer.
The 17-year-old Rivard from St-Jean-sur Richelieu, Que., posted a personal best 2:37.04 to qualify first for the women’s S10 200 IM final. She already has a bronze in the 100-m freestyle and silver in the 400-m freestyle.
Grand’Maison, with gold in the 100 butterfly Wednesday and silver in the 200-m IM on Monday, was the second fastest in the S13 50-m freestyle preliminaries in 28.57. The Montreal resident was only 0.02 behind top qualifier Anna Krivshina of Russia. Rhea Schmidt of Winnipeg was 10th overall.
Other Canadian women advancing to tonight’s finals were Katerina Roxon of Stephenville, N.L., who ranked fifth in the S8 100-m breaststroke and Danielle Kisser of Delta, B.C., eighth in the S6 200-m IM.
Danial Murphy of Halifax was 11th in the S5 200-m IM with a personal best time.
Also in tonight’s finals are Donovan Tildesley of Vancouver in the S11 100-m freestyle, Sarah Mehain of Vernon, B.C., in the S7 100-m backstroke and Canada is also entered in both 4X100-m freestyle relays.
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.
Sportsnet One will be airing a 30-minute highlights package featuring Canada’s top performances in the pool. The shows will air at 11 p.m. ET from Tuesday through Monday, with the exception of Saturday (11:30pm EST). TVA Sports will be presenting a daily show in French on its airwaves at 10 a.m. with an encore presentation at 2:30 p.m., from Tuesday through Monday.