5-time Olympic medalist is expected to be reclassified to the S8 category, SwimSwam has been told by an anonymous source, after the results of 2 of her 3 classification tests at this week’s IDM International meet in Berlin, Germany.
The 34-year old Millward is one of a large group of swimmers, including several Paralympic medal contenders, who are undergoing classification tests this week before the German-hosted meet that serves as a final major international tune-up before the Paralympics begin in Rio in September. On Wednesday, she underwent the bench test and in-water observation tests, which make up two-thirds of the testing done in classification proceedings, and the preliminary results will have her compete in the S8/SB8/SM8 categories in Rio. Previously, she had competed in the S9 category
The third-and-final test will be an observation of a race later in the week, once competition begins on Thursday, but it’s unlikely (not impossible) that the competition test will change the results of the first two evaluations.
Millward won 5 Olympic medals in front of a home British crowd in 2012: 4 silvers, and one bronze. Now she’ll join what is arguably the most competitive class in Paralympic swimming, which includes names like Maddison Elliott from Australia, Jessica Long from the USA, Lakeisha Patterson from Australia, and Olesia Vladykina from Russia.
Millward immediately moves to the top of that list in her primary events. Her 2016 year-best times so far would rank her 1st in the S8 class in the 100 free and 100 back.
American swimmers Ian Silverman and MacKenzie Coan are both also on track to be reclassified after their tests on Tuesday.