2008 PARALYMPIC GAMES: U.S. Swimmers Break Four Records in Preliminary Rounds of Day One Competition

Sept. 07, 2008, 6:21 a.m. (ET)
BEIJING, China – The U.S. Paralympic swimming team came out strong on day one of competition, breaking two world records and two Paralympic records in the morning preliminary rounds at the National Aquatics Center. In the men’s 200m individual medley (IM) (SM7), Rudy Garcia-Tolson (Colorado Springs, Colo./Bloomington, Calif.) beat his former world record by nearly three seconds with a time of 2:37.80. First-time Paralympian Amanda Everlove (Colorado Springs, Colo./Wichita, Kan.) also broke a world record, finishing the women’s 100m butterfly (S8) in 1:11.64.

Dominating the morning preliminary competition, the U.S. team broke two Paralympic records. U.S. team captain Erin Popovich (Fort Collins, Colo./Silverbow, Mont.) beat her previous world record with a time of 3:01.21 in the 200m IM (SM7) and Miranda Uhl (Alachua, Fla.) finished the women’s 200m IM (SM6) with a time of 3:16.95.

Pleased with their morning results, the athletes are looking ahead to tonight’s finals.

“This is a great moment. I got my best time and beat my world record. It’s great being a part of Team USA and I’m looking forward to tonight’s finals.”

“I was feeling ready to swim, so just went out and gave it all I could. I expected to do really well and I couldn’t be happier. I’m focused on staying in first place tonight for the finals.”

“I’m feeling great. I had a good morning swim and am really excited with the way it went. Now I need to prepare for tonight and get ready… work on the little things to make it even better. This is my first swim of the Games, so it’s a nice way to start.”

“The crowd was incredible. I have a lot left and hope to get a personal best tonight. My goal is to not have any regrets, go out and try my hardest and not leave anything in the pool.”

Following this morning’s preliminary round, 15 U.S. swimmers will advance to finals:

17:14 Women’s 100m Butterfly (S13) – Kelley Becherer (Sheboygan, Wis)
17:20 Men’s 100m Freestyle (S3) – Michael DeMarco (San Diego, Calif.)
17:42 Men’s 100m Freestyle (S4) – Joe McCarthy (San Diego, Calif.)
17:48 Women’s 100m Freestyle (S4) – Cheryl Angelelli-Kornoelje (Clinton Township, Mich.), Aimee Bruder (Birmingham, Ala.)
18:11 Men’s 100m Freestyle (S5) – Roy Perkins (Del Mar, Calif.)
18:39 Women’s 200m IM (SM6) – Miranda Uhl (Alachua, Fla.)
18:39 Men’s 200m IM (SM7) - Rudy Garcia-Tolson (Colorado Springs, Colo./Bloomington, Calif.)
19:17 Women’s 200m IM (SM7) – Erin Popovich (Fort Collins, Colo./Silverbow, Mont.), Cortney Jordan, (Henderson, Nev.), Deb Gruen (Hamden, Conn.)
19:47 Women’s 100m Butterfly (S8) – Jessica Long (Baltimore, Md.), Amanda Everlove (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
20:09 Men’s 100m Butterfly (S9) – Mark Barr (Davis, Calif.), Cody Bureau (Colorado Springs, Colo./Latrobe, Pa.)

For complete swimming results, visit http://results.beijing2008.cn/WRMP/ENG/Schedule/SW.shtml.

For more information, please contact Tara Dugan Kusumoto at 139 1063 1844. If calling from the U.S., dial 011 86 plus the local number.