2019 WORLD PARA SWIMMING WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
- September 9-15, 2019
- London Aquatics Centre, London, England
- Prelims 10 a.m. local time/finals 6 p.m.
- Full results
Australian veteran Lakeisha Patterson, who nabbed a world title in the women’s S9 400 free Friday in London, caught up with SwimSwam after her race to break down her strategy and talk about her impairment.
“I can’t control what anybody else is doing, so I’ve got t0 just zone in, focus on myself during the race, and not really focus on what everyone else is doing,” Patterson said. “When I breathe to the left, I can kind of see them a little bit behind me, so that does drive me to keep it going.”
She goes on to explain her impairment. Patterson, 20, was recently classed up from S8 to S9; she earned six S8 medals (including two gold) at the 2016 Paralympics. She went 4:38.29 in the 400 Friday, winning by five seconds and setting a new Oceania record. The world record, set by Natalie Du Toit in 2008, sits at 4:23.81.
Patterson went on to discuss how her impairment affects her swimming.
“I have cerebral palsy left hemiplegia, which means the left side of my body – my arm, trunk and left leg is all impaired – leaving me with loss of coordination, balance and some other issues, so in the water, I’m really just powering home on the right side of my body, which can be quite hard to balance, so I’ve got to really work on my core and move through the water as fast as I can.”