Spain's Marta Fernandez adds gold to her Paralympic debut

RPC celebrates three wins on day seven while New Zealand's legend Sophie Pascoe takes first victory and Ukraine's Trusov tops the podium for fifth time 31 Aug 2021
A woman with a big smile in the pool
Marta Fernandez Infante of Spain celebrated her first gold at the Paralympic Games in the women's 50m breaststroke SB3
ⒸCarmen Mandato/Getty Images
By OIS and World Para Swimming

Day seven of the Para swimming action at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre offered 14 exciting finals including a gold for a 27-year-old making her Paralympic Games debut. 

Spain's Marta Fernandez Infante competed in her first international event in May and three months later she is a Paralympic champion in the women's 50m breaststroke SB3.

"I’m very happy, I’m very proud of the result. These two medals are going to be very important moments that I will never forget,” said Fernandez who had already taken a silver in the women's 50m butterfly S5.

The Spaniard clocked 58.21 in the race to top the podium.

“I am very surprised by the way I’ve managed the nerves in this competition. I know I’m capable of anything."

RPC's Nataliia Butkova finished in second place and Mexico's Nely Miranda in third.

Gold for Pascoe, world record for Krypak

New Zealand's legend Sophie Pascoe won her 10th Paralympic title in the 100m freestyle S9 (1:02.37). It was Pascoe's first gold in Tokyo after finishing second in the 100m backstroke S9 and third in the 100m breaststroke SB8.

Another Para swimming icon, Ukraine's Maksym Krypak, triumphed in the men's 100m butterfly S10 with a new world record (54.15).

"I am very happy that I finally improved my time in the 100m butterfly and that I beat the record held by my teammate, Denys Dubrov," said Krypak who won silver in Rio five years ago behind Dubrov.

"That motivated me. I was really fired up to beat my personal best result and also the best result here, the world record. The most important thing for me is to improve my own times," concluded the Ukrainian Para swimmer who already has four medals to his name in Tokyo.

Andrii Trusov won the second title of the day for Ukraine in the men's 50m freestyle S7 with a time of 27.43. It was his second gold and fifth medal overall.

Two golds for the USA

USA's Morgan Stickney triumphed in the women's 400m freestyle S8 (4:42.39) in front of her compatriot Jessica Long. It was Long's 26th Paralympic medal, five of those came in the 400m freestyle.

Mikaela Jenkins gave Team USA one more reason to celebrate in the women's 100m butterfly S10 (1:07.52). She added the Paralympic gold to the London 2019 World Championships title.

Brazil's Maria Carolina Santiago (59.01) and Azerbaijan's Raman Salei (52.69) won golds in the women's and men's 100m freestyle S12.

RPC starts and finishes with a win

RPC took three titles on Tuesday as they opened and concluded the session with gold at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre.

Andrei Nikolaev won the first final of the evening (4:25.16) as he held off a fast-finishing Alberto Amodeo of Italy in the 400m freestyle S8 to add the Paralympic title to his world gold.

Valeriia Shabalina followed suit with a comprehensive victory in the women’s 200m individual medley SM14 (2:20.99) for her third title so far in Tokyo.

She also sent a warning to her competitors who may have hoped her medal-winning exploits may be dulling her edge.

"It's the opposite," Shabalina said. "I get more energy from them."

In the final event of the evening, Vladimir Sotnikov made up more than three seconds to overhaul Maria Carolina Santiago of Brazil on the anchor leg to claim victory in the mixed 4x100m freestyle - 49 points (3:53.79).

Nikolaev had not expected his victory which went some way to erasing his disappointment with finishing second in the 100m freestyle S8.

“I analysed my mistakes after that and I understood it was my own mistakes that led to that result. Here I came back to show the best of me," he said.

Confident Dunn triumphs for the third time

Great Britain's Reece Dunn added to his medal collection with another gold in the 200m individual medley SM14.

It was his third title of the meet so far, and fourth medal overall, and came in a world record time (2:08.02).

“I’m a confident person, I believe no one can beat me. Even in my worst events I go into that believing I’m the best," the British swimmer said.

Italian couple celebrates medals

Italy enjoyed another fine evening with a gold, two silver medals and a bronze.

Giulia Terzi claimed her second title, and fourth medal so far in Japan, in the women’s 100m freestyle S7 with a new Paralympic record (1:09.21).

In the following race, her partner Stefano Raimondi took silver in the men’s 100m butterfly S10.

The pair met through the national team in March 2019 but were unable to get together during the strict lockdown in Italy, nor when restrictions were lifted as movement from one region to another was banned.

“He is the person who knows me best, he is helping me when I need and I don’t even have to speak to him, he already knows what I am thinking,” Terzi said. “Having him here is very important.”

Mexico's Arnulfo Castorena was the fastest man in the 50m breaststroke SB2 with a time of 59.25. It was his first medal in Tokyo.

The action at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre continues with 15 finals on day eight. Complete schedule and results from the Tokyo 2020 Games are available on