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Sophie Pascoe beats world record twice, wins gold

31 Aug 2012

Pascoe’s plan works a treat in the Pool

If Sophie Pascoe was wanting to let her actions do the talking at the London 2012 Paralympic Games then the Christchurch kid opened her campaign with an almighty roar, wiping just over half a second off the world record in the 200 metre individual medley heat and then a further 3 seconds in the final.

Pascoe swallowed the old record of 2:29.35 which stood ahead of the London Games and now has her name beside 2:25.65.

The defending Paralympic champion rocketed out of the blocks, continually increasing her lead with each turn. Even her breaststroke which has predominantly been her weaker discipline was equally as impressive as the other three.

Speaking after her heat Pascoe summed up her race by suggesting everything had gone to plan. "I wanted to go out nice and calm, I went out fast and just relaxed into my four strokes, I usually go out too fast in the first 50 but I definitely relaxed it and came back home, hitting a 28 was just the perfect time that I wanted and I know I’ve got more in the tank for tonight.”

“We’ve definitely been working on the breaststroke for the past year, it’s a hard stroke and the field for breaststroke is incredible, it’s one of the things we wanted to work on as well as the freestyle, that’s the last 100 to come home in, so I just had to push that 50 in the breaststroke.”

A world record in the morning and then another, plus a gold medal in the evening, Pascoe’s delight was written all over her face. But the determined 19 year old knows there will be plenty of time for celebrating. “I might treat myself to have a little extra desert,” joked Pascoe, before putting the serious look back on her face, “my main focus now is the next 5 races, I came here for 6 and this is just one so bring on the next five.”

“I was going to be happy with a 27 but a 25 I’m really stoked. It’s sort of a bit unexpected but you know, it comes down to I did all the hard yards before I came here and that’s exactly what I went out to go do."

Has this set the platform for more to come over the week, you bet ya. But the main lesson Pascoe says she’s learnt from today’s performance is her preparations are right on song, and she won’t be changing a thing. “I’m quite a picky time planner, everything has to be perfect, the whole camp back in our village has our time plan, they know when to talk to me, when not to talk to me, so that’s the preparation that I need to go into these five races. Have a good sleep and it’s the 50 free [freestyle] tomorrow."

30 Aug 2012
11 New Zealand athletes take part in Opening Ceremony
The London 2012 Paralympic Games launched in unforgettable style on Thursday morning New Zealand time, with Professor Stephen Hawking and Sir Ian McKellen appearing in a memorable Opening Ceremony at the Olympic Stadium.

Eleven New Zealand athletes took part including flag bearer, Michael Johnson The event launched 11 days of competition involving 4,280 athletes from 164 countries competing across 20 sports – the biggest Paralympic Games ever staged.


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