2017 Para Swimming World Series – Sheffield
Multiple world records fell at the third stop of the Para Swimming World Series in Sheffield, Great Britain, with the four days of competition coming to a close Sunday. The meet was competed in a multi-class format, with a points system used to determine the winner of each event.
There was a total of three world records broken, achieved by Brits Alice Tai and Bethany Firth and the Czech Republic’s Arnost Petracek.
Tai, the Rio bronze medalist in the 100 back, broke the women’s world record in a time of 1:07.66 on her way to gold, totalling 1045 points.
“It seems so surreal right now to be a world record holder,” Tai said. “I wasn’t expecting to swim that much faster than this morning. Going into the race my PB was 1:08.34 so I was going to be happy with anything close to that. “I’ve not been close to my PB in a while so to go a 1:07 and knock lots of time off my PB and get the world record is just crazy”, Tai said post race.
Three-time Paralympic champion Firth broke the world record in the women’s s14 100 fly, putting up a time of 1:04.62. Despite the record, Firth didn’t win. That went to Rebecca Meyers of the US, who, competing in the S13 category, recorded a time of 1:04.70 to give her 934 points. Firth’s swim earned her 845 points and placed her 5th.
Along with the 100 fly record, Firth won gold in the 200 free in a time of 2:04.31 for 947 points. She was the Paralympic champion in that event last summer.
The other record went to Petracek, who broke a nine-year-old record in the men’s S4 50 back clocking 42.22 for gold. He also won gold in the 50 fly.
Along with the world records, there was also a British Record broken by Lewis White, who broke the S9 100 free record in a time of 57.18, earning him gold and 850 points.
Along with Petracek, there were three other multi-event winners in the meet. Dmitriy Horlin of Uzbekistan won the 200 IM, 100 fly and 400 free competing in the S12 category. Hannah Russell of Great Britain took down both the 50 and 100 free titles for women competing in the S12 category, and the American Meyers added wins in the 200 IM and 400 free to go along with the 100 fly mentioned earlier.
British Swimming did full recaps of all eight sessions in Sheffield, which you can find on their website here.
Check out some of the interviews from the winners, courtesy of British Swimming on Youtube, below.