The season had a perfect start for British, Canadian and Dutch stars, and also for a Spanish Paralympic legend as the Citi Para Swimming World Series Great Britain 2024 concluded on Sunday (4 February).
A Dutch name in particular stole the spotlight at the Aberdeen Sports Village throughout the four days of competition. Three-time Paralympic champion Rogier Dorsman dominated the medal count collecting five gold and two silver.
Dorsman (S11) earned the top spot of the podium in the men’s 50m butterfly, 100m breaststroke and 100m backstroke, 200m medley and 400m freestyle. The 24-year-old swimmer finished second in the men’s 50m and 100m freestyle.
“Some races were good, some races could have been better, but I think, especially for this time of the year, I’m quite happy with the results. I think the way I improved every final session is a way to work and I’m happy with that,” Dorsman said.
The Dutch was at the forefront of the impressive Team Netherlands performance that also saw Bas Takken’s (S10) take gold in the men’s 50m backstroke to draw with the home nation as the only teams to win six golds in Aberdeen.
Team Netherlands picked 12 medals in total as Florianne Bultje (S9) grabbed a bronze in the women’s 100m butterfly while Lisa Kruger (S10) took two silvers (women’s 50m butterfly and 100m breaststroke) and a bronze, in the women’s 100m backstroke.
Great Britain topped the medals table as their seven silver and nine bronze medals took their total to 22.
More than half of the 24 podiums in the four days of the Citi Para Swimming World Series Great Britain 2024 had at least one British swimmer.
William Ellard (S14), the best male junior athlete in last year’s edition of the Citi World Series, had an outstanding start of the season winning two races, the men’s 100m freestyle and 100m butterfly. He also picked a silver medal in the men’s 200m freestyle.
The other British gold landed by Megan Neave (S14) in the women’s 100m backstroke, Toni Shaw (S9) in the women’s 400m freestyle, Louise Fiddes (S14) in the women’s 200m freestyle, and Faye Rogers (S10) in the 100m butterfly.
Shaw’s gold came in a clean sweep as she shared the 400m freestyle-podium with Rogers in second and Brock Whiston (S8) in third.
Closing the top three in the first leg of the Citi World Series 2024, Canada also had a remarkable stay in Aberdeen grabbing five gold medals with Paralympic champions Aurelie Rivard, Tess Routliffe, and Danielle Dorris.
Rivard (S10) triumphed in the women’s 50m and 100m freestyle while Routliffe (S7) won the women’s 200m medley and 100m breaststroke. Dorris (S7) added a gold to the Canadian collection with a victory in the women’s 50m butterfly.
Spain’s seven-time Paralympic champion Teresa Perales faced new challenges in Aberdeen on the eve of Paris 2024. The S2 swimmer swam the women’s 150m medley for the first time and broke the world record* not once but twice. First, she clocked 4:44.16 in the heats. Then she returned for the finals and took the gold medal lowering her own time in almost four seconds (4:40.44).
“It’s the first time I swim this race and I feel very happy. It was a good time, it was a world record. A long time ago, I did it [set a world record] but not in this class. It’s my first time as S2. I’m very happy and hopefully thinking about Paris,” the Spanish Paralympic legend said.
For complete results of the Citi Para Swimming World Series Great Britain 2024 visit https://results.swimming.org/disability/results/2024/bpsm/.
Next stop: Australia
The season now has a two-week break until it heads to Oceania for the Citi Para Swimming World Series Australia from 23 to 25 February in Melbourne.
It will be the second out of nine meets in the 2024 calendar that can be found here.
After Australia, other five legs will take place before Paris 2024 Paralympic Games: Lignano Sabbiadoro in March, USA in April, Singapore and Berlin in May, and France in June.
The World Series 2024 will then resume in November with a stop in Mexico and Egypt in December.
*World records are subjected to be ratified by World Para Swimming.