Swimming Western Australia
Published: Sep 4, 2012 12:39:28 PM
Katherine Downie has won her first paralympic gold medal as a member of the victorious world record breaking 4x100m freestyle relay team while 13-year-old Maddison Elliott became Australia’s youngest ever Paralympic gold medallist on night five of swimming action at the Aquatic Centre.
Saving the best ‘til last, the Aussie team of Ellie Cole, Elliott, Kat Downie and Freney smashed the world record by some three seconds to win Australia’s ninth gold medal at the pool and 23rd medal in total to maintain second place on the swimming medal tally behind China.
Swimming the final leg against an S10 and S9 swimmer, gold medal winner many times over Freney, left the blocks with a 16m head start thanks to a strong third leg from WA’s Downie.
“The girls swam out of their skin for Australia and I just didn’t want to let them down at all,” said Freney. “I gave it my all and we ended up with the world record and the gold medal to boot, so I couldn’t be prouder of these girls.”
“Kat had a 16 metre head start for me which was really great, and I just wanted to keep that lead and I knew that the other girls from the other nations would go out hard but I held them off.”
Kat will tonight contest the women’s 100m backstroke where she hopes to continue her fine form.