MONTREAL — Competition at the 2013 International Paralympic Committee Swimming World Championships in Montreal, Canada, got underway at the Parc Jean-Drapeau's Aquatic Complex tonight, yielding four U.S. medals on day one of the meet.
Rebecca Meyers (Timonium, Md.) got things started with the first medal of the competition - gold - in a showdown to the wall with Canadian world record holder Valerie Grand-Maison in the women's 200m individual medley SM 13 event.
Meyers, who won silver in the same event at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, finished in 2:30.04 for the gold - eight tenths of a second ahead of her competitor.
"I've raced Valerie many times and she's so strong, I didn't expect to win," said Meyers. "But at the turn, I saw I was ahead and just pushed it, I really went for it, and I knew I could do it. I was really happy with my race."
Courtney Jordan (Henderson, Nev.) pulled double duty tonight: she served as Team USA's flag bearer for the Opening Ceremony and also won gold in the women's 400m free S7 event. Jordan, who won silver in the same event at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, finished in 5:19.60 tonight.
"The fact that my team nominated me to be flag bearer based on my character means the world to me," said Jordan. "I won gold by myself, but carrying that flag, that's something I did with my team, and you can't beat that."
In the men's 50m butterfly S5, Roy Perkins (Del Mar, Calif.) struck gold, beating out rival and world record holder in the event, Daniel Dias of Brazil. Perkins, who won silver in the same event in London, shaved more than a second off of his time from this morning's prelims to edge out Dias 34.55 to 34.78.
"I'm really happy with my race," said Perkins. "I just didn't have it this morning, so I was really pleased tonight. My coach is in the hospital and couldn't be here, so I'm happy I could win it for him."
Ian Silverman (Baltimore, Md.) added the fourth U.S. medal of the day, after winning silver in the men's 100m free S10. Silverman, the gold medalist in the event in London, was first to the wall in prelims this morning, but in tonight's finals Brazil's Andre Brasil took the gold with a time of 51.57, with Silverman right behind him in 32.23, followed by Brazil's Phelipe Andrews Melo Rodrigues.
The 2013 IPC Swimming World Championships run from Aug. 12-18 and feature approximately 500 athletes, including 24 U.S. athletes, from nearly 60 countries. Each night, finals will be streamed live at www.paralympic.org/events/montreal-2013/live-stream. For live results, visit www.paralympic.org/events/montreal-2013/live-results.For more information, please contact Beth Bourgeois, U.S. Paralympics at (719)306-5639 or firstname.lastname@example.org.