SOUTH Australian Matthew Cowdrey has won his third gold medal of the 2012 Paralympic Games and 11th overall as he prepares for a three-peat in his main events the 200m IM and 100m freestyle over the next two days.
Winning the men’s 50m freestyle (S9) tonight in a world record time of 25.13, Cowdrey cemented his place in history as Australia’s most prolific gold medal Paralympian surpassing Tim Sullivan’s 10, with a chance to add three more over the next three days.
Breaking his own world mark which he set in Adelaide in March, the 23-year-old won by more than a second over the 50m free, for his fifth medal of the meet, and 20th Paralympic medal overall.
“I started to lose it a little bit out there," said Cowdrey. “I am normally pretty composed but I nearly let it get to me a little bit.”
"It is not something I think will sink in until we are all done and dusted and we are finished and I can sit down and relax. Eleven gold medals is a lot.”
"To be Australia's best Paralympian is humbling and it is a huge honour."
Ellie Cole picked up her fourth medal of the meet taking bronze in the women’s 50m freestyle (S9) smashing into the wall just 0.07 of a second off silver, while Annie Williams finish sixth overall in 29.76. Cole came home strongly over the last 15m to put herself in the mix, and will now look to finish off the meet strongly with the 200m IM and 100m free having won Australia’s 28th medal at the pool.
Tanya Huebner was just outside the medals in the women’s 100m breaststroke (SB6) to finish in 1:42.45, a second and a half off bronze, while Katrina Porter, swimming at her third Paralympics finished 6th overall in 1:54.54. Dual Paralympian Esther Overton finished fifth in her final of the women’s 50m backstroke (S2) in 1:16.09.
The first final of the night saw breaststroke gold medallist Blake Cochrane finish seventh overall in the men’s 200m IM (SM8) in 2:33.66, while fellow gold medallist Maddi Elliott also finished seventh in the corresponding women’s event in a personal best time of 2:59.26.
The women’s 400m freestyle (S10) saw Kat Downie finish sixth in 4:53.59 while fellow West Australian Jeremy McClure improved on his heat swim to finish 8th in the men’s 100m breaststroke (S12) in 1:07.11, while Jay Dohnt finished seventh in the final of men’s 100m breaststroke (SB6) in 1:33.53.
By Lachlan Searle