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2012 Paralympics Day 2 - Results Summary

01 Sep 2012
Day 2 - Results Summary
Two silver and a bronze medal were won and a total of 11 New Zealand athletes were in action on Day 2 of the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

To view the Day 2 results click here.

- Paralympics New Zealand

01 Sep 2012
A whole lot of firsts for Kiwi Paralympic sailors
It’s a man’s world can no longer be used to describe Sailing amongst the New Zealand Paralympic crew. Just as the 1st of September marks the first day of spring in New Zealand, it will also be remembered for the first day a women sailed under the New Zealand flag at the Paralympic Games. Jan Apel has teamed up with fellow Aucklander Tim Dempsey to contest their first games which will also represent New Zealand’s participation in the competition for the first time since Sydney in 2000.

Remarkably Apel is also the oldest member of the New Zealand team of 24 at the sprightly age of 61. Apel and Dempsey have been sailing well in the build-up to the games, and despite only teaming up three months prior to the IFDS World Championships in 2010 the biggest issues their SKUD18 boat is likely to face is the lack of wind in Weymouth.

Traditionally Kiwi sailors have been regarded as better seaman in rougher conditions than say the Mediterranean’s, but Coach Robert Hielkema is confident they can overcome whatever is headed their way. “We’ve been here quite a bit over the past couple of years so we know what to expect. The conditions in Weymouth can be a bit like home, off the coast of Auckland, but with no wind it’s nothing like home. However we’ve trained for every type of condition and they’re ready.”

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And preparing for whatever the weather can throw at you has seen the Paralympic team race against some of the worlds best sailors, such as Emirates Team New Zealand skipper Dean Barker and his crew. “We’re in the Viaduct [in Auckland] together so yeah we get to see them all the time, they’re a real inspiration to our sailors” said Hielkema. “We’ve invited them out a few times and our crew has even beaten them on occasion.”

The thing with sailing is once your body’s parked on the centre line a person’s disability goes out the window. It soon becomes a level playing field even if the water isn’t.

Also competing in Weymouth is the third and final member of the Kiwi sailing team Peter Francis. Francis who, like his other two team mates, resides in the city of sails will compete single handed in the 2.4MR class. The 54-year old first won the P class Tauranga cup in 1974 and has gone on to compete in eleven sailing world championships.

The medal races for the SKUD and the 2.4M are in the early hours of Friday morning [NZT].

- Paralympics New Zealand

01 Sep 2012
Martin throws further than ever before
They say a change is as good as a holiday, but perhaps not in the case of Waikato's Peter Martin. After 5 years away from the rigors of international sport the 50 year old farmer stepped right back to where he left off, throwing a personal best and just missing out on a medal in the F52/53 men’s Shot Put at the London Paralympic Games.

All bar one of Martins throws were in excess of 8 meters, with his furthest effort a whopping 8.62m on his second throw twelve centre meters further than his previous personal record. After calling time on his athletics career prior to the Beijing games four year ago, Martin felt he had to come back and give it one last crack. “I need to see if the competition has moved on, this is the new challenge to see if I can come back,” said the already four time gold medallist.

And tonight in the London Olympic Park he got the answers he was looking for. His throw of 8.62 was third furthest on the night, but because of the scaling in the competition he had to settle for fifth.

- Paralympics New Zealand

01 Sep 2012
No shaking Fisher in her Paralympic debut
Wellington's Mary Fisher joined Sophie Pascoe in the pool of medals at the London Paralympics tonight, waving goodbye to her former personal best and welcoming a silver medal in the S11 100 metre freestyle.

Fisher who is making her debut at a Paralympics, proved it’s all about how you come home in a 100 metre class, after hitting the turn in third, she ground down her opponent who was clinging onto second by attaching herself to the tail of the Italian who claimed the gold medal in 1:07.29.

“I’m really happy to get silver, going into the final stretch was really exciting, I could feel the girl next to me who got the gold, it must have been her kick on the last 25 meters, But it was amazing.”

Fisher set a new personal best and a new Oceania record in the heat this morning in a time of 1:12.01 and then sunk the clock for a second time today in 1:09.83. China’s Guizhi Li rounded out the podium in 1:10.25.

Even after a personal best in the heat, Fisher was confident there was more to come in the final.

“This morning my second 50 [metres] was a lot slower than my first so I really tried to work on that and just keeping relaxed, but just over the moon, I can’t believe I won a medal in the one hundred free, it’s just amazing.”

The feeling of jubilation wasn’t going to be lost on the fresh faced 19-year old who was going to have a bit of a celebration. “Just enjoy the moment, and then focus on my other races. Hopefully I can swim PB’s in those as well, but I’ll be celebrating with the team.”

Less than an hour before Fishers race Sophie Pascoe set the tone with a strong showing in the 50 metre freestyle, also with a silver medal.

The 19-year old set a new Paralympic record in her heat in 28:41 before Canadian Summer Ashley Mortimer stole it the following heat by two hundredths of a second. From there Pascoe knew it would be all on in the final.

Drawn in adjacent lanes the final was something to witness, the two went hammer and tongs in the event referred to as the "splash and dash” for obvious reasons. And although she swam a brilliant race, technically sound in maintaining her stroke, the gold was just a touch too far. “I did everything that I wanted to do, but it came down to that final touch, and she just beat me in the touch, but hey that’s the way sport goes,” admitted Pascoe.

Soon after her medal ceremony, tomorrow’s races were already on the mind of Pascoe, “the 100 fly is one of my peak events so it’s about getting back home now, resting up and I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s race.”

Fisher will also be back in the pool tomorrow in the women’s S11 50 freestyle.

- Paralympics New Zealand

01 Sep 2012
Big gear equals Bronze for Southland cyclists
Just like the Kiwi Paralympic tandem girls Phillipa Gray and Laura Thompson, the New Zealand medal tally is rolling along with a head of steam. The Southland duo has this morning (GMT) bagged New Zealand’s third medal at the London 2012 games, securing bronze in the Women’s B 1km time trial.

The girls finished just two hundredths of a second ahead of the fourth placed pair from Great Britain, and behind two dominant crews. Australia claimed gold in 1:08.91, Great Brittan snared silver in 1:09.46 with Gray and Thompson in 1:11.24.

Coach Brendon Cameron chose to adopt a larger gear for the race and judging by the result the decision was spot on, as the tandem two powered down the final 500 metres as their competitors petered out. “We know our 500 is really good but at the time you've got no idea how fast you’re going, whether you’re creeping or flying so you just have to give it all you’ve got and hope it’s enough,” said Thompson.

There wasn’t much time for talking as they cranked up the pace down the back half of the race, with Thompson at the helm it was a case of going for broke. “I just heard her [Phillipa] squeal when she looked up and saw we got the bronze”. “That’s all I needed to see and I was like YES!” yelled a delighted Gray.

This medal is what both riders and Coach have described as the icing on the cake, given this is the shorter race and not their key event. “We knew gold and silver were out of our league; they’ve been out of our league for a couple of years really, and we’re not kilo riders but we knew the bronze medal was a possibility. There were three tandems out there that could have taken it, so it pretty much came down to those last milliseconds,” Gray explained.

The pair is now looking to slip further up the dais on Sunday, where they will compete in their favoured event the 3000 meter Pursuit.

“There’s going to be four teams that are in contention for that, so we’re going to have to pull something pretty amazing out of the bag to be up there for the gold medal round,” said an analytical Gray.

Mary Fisher claimed second and an Oceania Record in the S11 Women's 100 meter Freestyle in a time of 1:12.01 which sees her through to tonight's final, while Aine Kelly - Costello in the same heat finished 5th place 1:23.10.

13 year old Nikita Howarth missed her final finishing 6th in 40:94 in the S7 women's Butterfly. While Daniel Holt had to settle for 5th place in the S13 men's 100 butterfly, in 1:02.77 both miss out on their respective finals.

Danny McBride rowed into fourth in the heat at Eaton Dorney in the ASM1x Men's single sculls which sees the Waikato forestry worker headed for the Repecharge tomorrow.

- Paralympics New Zealand


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