Aussie Paralympian Smashes 400M Freestyle Record To Bring Home Our 1st Gold

Australia has scored its first Paralympic gold medal at Rio in the S8 400 metres freestyle, with Lakeisha Patterson slicing 0.11 seconds off the world record in the event.

Patterson defeated the previous record holder, US swimmer Jessica Long, after successfully pulling ahead at the 100m metre mark. Her final time with 4 minutes and 40.33 seconds.
“It was pretty surreal really,” Patterson told APC Media.

“I knew I had to attack and go out hard and keep fighting for it, and I knew she was right behind me, so I just had to keep going forward.”
“Jess is an amazing and fierce competitor, and to be able to race alongside her and get past her was bitter sweet because she has been my idol growing up. So to race alongside her, and end up on top is quite amazing.”

Patterson is competing in a total of six events at the Paralympics – her next is the 100m butterfly. Hers is the second medal that Australia has won in the Games thus far, the first being a silver won by cyclist Sue Powell in individual pursuit cycling earlier in the day.
Source: ABC News.
Photo: Getty Images.