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Great Britain set two world records at World Para Swimming Championships

GB set two world records at World Para Swimming Championships
© Reuters
Great Britain set two world records and take home a total of five gold medals on day one of the World Para Swimming Championships in Madeira.

A remarkable opening day for Great Britain at the World Para Swimming Championships saw two new world records set and five gold medals brought home in Madeira.

Coming off the back of her Paralympic silver medal from the Tokyo 2020 Games, Ellie Challis stormed to the title in the women's 50m breaststroke SB2 with a time of 1:04.33.

Eighteen-year-old Challis admitted after the event that she feared for her participation after ripping two of her swimsuits, but the teenager was able to bask in the moment after setting an "insane" world record.

"I ripped two suits and I didn't even think I was making it to my race. I literally ran from the changing room straight out. I had no time in the call room. To then do a world record is insane," BBC Sport quotes Challis as saying.

The second world record of the day belonged to Paralympic gold medallist Tully Kearney, who won the women's 50m freestyle S5 in 34.07 seconds after initial concerns over a shoulder injury.

"I'm still pretty shocked with that. This morning I didn't even know if I was going to race due to my injury, but I'm just over the moon," Kearney added. "I've had to be a lot more sensible and race smart, which is something I struggle with as a natural racer.

"But in order to keep my shoulder going throughout the meet, I've got to be sensible throughout the heats and then go for it in the final. I'm looking forward to seeing what I can do as the meet progresses."

Bethany Firth took one of the other three golds for GB in the Women's 200m freestyle S14 event, and she was closely followed by compatriots Jessica-Jane Applegate and Louise Fiddes in second and third respectively.

Stephen Clegg also came out on top in the men's S12 100m backstroke competition, while Hannah Russell finished atop the podium in the identical women's race.

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Reece Dunn of Britain in action at the Tokyo Paralympics on August 25, 2021
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