December 13, 2013, EDMONTON (ISN) – Seventeen-year-old Alex Elliot of Waterloo, Ont., stole the spotlight on Friday as he produced upset victories in the 50-m butterfly and 100-m breaststroke to open the 2013 Speedo Can-Am Para Swimming Championships.
Elliot took the men’s S10 disability category 50-m butterfly in a personal best 27.20 seconds finishing ahead of 19-time Paralympic medallist Benoit Huot of Montreal in second at 27.92 and 2012 Paralympian Isaac Bouckley of Oshawa, Ont., in third at 31.08.
A few minutes later, Elliot prevailed again in the 100-m breaststroke in 1:19.20 another personal best with Bouckley second in 1:20.22.
”It’s pretty exciting, this is the first big impact I’ve made at this level,” said Elliot, who was born with small hands and feet. ”I wasn’t expecting a best time in either event. I’m not really a sprinter and I’m not known for my breaststroke.”
Elliot started swimming as a youngster then quit for a few years before making a permanent commitment to the sport at age 12.
”I’ve definitely been working a lot harder in training,” said Elliot. ”I can see the difference already.”
Elliot wasn’t the only double winner on the night. Aurélie Rivard of St-Jean-sur Richelieu, Que., a quintuple medallist at the world championships last year took the women’s S10 100-m freestyle and 100-m breaststroke. Her 100-free time was a personal best 1:01.89.
”I never thought I’d go a best time this early in the season,” said Rivard. ”The key was my second 50-metre after a strong turn.”
Nicolas-Guy Turbide of Quebec City set two personal best times with victories in the 100-freestyle and 50-m butterfly in the S13 class for visually impaired. His 58.22 in the 100-m free was his first sub one minute clocking.
”I changed my training program this year and I was hoping to fare well here,” said Turbide, 16. ”This is a season in which I really want to move up the international rankings.”
Canadian records were set Friday by Camille Bérubé of Gatineau, Que., in the S8 200-m backstroke, Gordie Michie of St. Thomas, Ont., in the S14 50-m butterfly, Zach Zona of Hamilton in the S8 1500-m freestyle and Dalton Boon of Tsawwassen, B.C. in the S14 100-m freestyle.
American swimmers set two world records: Kayla Wheeler in the S2 50-m butterfly and Courtney Jordan in the S7 1500-m freestyle.
Competition continues through to Sunday. Preliminary sessions start at 9:30 a.m. with finals set to start at 4:30 p.m. at the Kinsmen Sports Centre (95 Walterdale Hill)
Live results are available at: https://swimming.ca/liveresults/2013canamedmonton/