Stilwell golden on track at London 2012 Paralympic Games - Super silver for Valérie Grand'Maison at Paralympic Games

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LONDON, United Kingdom, Sept. 1, 2012 /CNW/ - Michelle Stilwell of Nanoose Bay, B.C., today won Canada's second track and field and Canada's eighth medal overall at the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Stilwell won gold in the women's T52 classification 200-metres in a new Paralympic Games record time of 33.80 seconds.

"From the beginning the crowd had a roar and the roar kept going, I'm so happy right now, I've put everything into this for the last four years," said Stilwell. "My whole family is here and I couldn't be happier to share this with them."

Stilwell is well on her way in repeating her feat of double gold at the Paralympic Games. At the 2008 Games she took first in the T52 wheelchair 100 and 200-metres. Having just won gold in the 200-metres she'll now prepare and look forward to the 100-metres final which is set for Wednesday September 5.

In swimming, Valérie Grand'Maison of Montreal won the silver medal in the women's S13 50-metre freestyle. Kelly Becherer of the U.S., took the gold medal in 27.46 seconds, Grand'Maison followed in a personal best 27.91 and Prue Watt of Australia  was third in 27.94.

"I've never won this event so for me coming second is still a big success," said Grand'Maison, Canada's most successful Para swimmer at the 2008 Games with six medals including three gold.  "To go a best time for the first time in four years is something to be proud of."

The performance also gave Grand'Maison some big confidence for the rest of the Games. She was hampered by a shoulder injury that derailed her 2011 season.

"I'm a lot less stressed than I thought I would be," she said.  "It was actually a lot of fun.  There was a British girl in the race and that really got the crowd into it."


Norbert Murphy (Vaudreuil-Dorion, PQ) defeated Peter Kinik of Slovakia 6-0 in the quarterfinals of Compound Bow, Men's ARW1 and will compete in the semifinals Monday, September 3 against Jeff Fabry of the U.S.

"Norbert was absolutely dominant today," said head coach Vladimir Kopecky (Kimberley, BC). "It was a one-way competition. He was very focused and is in good spirits."


Braedon Dolfo of Langley, B.C., finished seventh in the men's T13 visually impaired 100-metres final. Dolfo crossed the finish line in 11.27 seconds, just one one-hundredth of a second shy of the Canadian record he established in yesterday's semi-final.

In the men's T54 wheelchair 100-metres Curtis Thom of Mississauga, Ont., placed third in his heat in 14.47 seconds to advance to tomorrow's final at 15:35 local time (12:35 eastern time). Colin Mathieson of Winnipeg, MB., was sixth in his heat in a time of 15.25 seconds, he did not advance to the final.

In the men's T44 amputee 200-metres Alister McQueen of Calgary, Alta., placed third in his heat in 24.25 seconds and did not advance to the final. McQueen will now shift his focus to the javelin which goes tomorrow at 19:05 local time (14:05 eastern time).


In the 500m Time Trial (C4-5): Marie-Claude Molnar, Ste-Adèle (QC) finished 10th with a time of 42.228. This time was a personal best in this event.

In the 1km Time Trial: Daniel Chalifour, Mont-Laurier (QC) and Alexandre Cloutier (pilot), St-Antoine-de-Tilly (QC) finished 8th with a time of 1:05.433.


In the Grade II Individual Championship Test, Lauren Barwick, of Aldergrove, BC, (riding Off to Paris) finished in sixth place with score of 71.857%. Ashley Gowanlock of Surrey, BC, (riding Maile) and was sixth place in the Grade 1B Team Test, scoring 69.304%. The second phase of Individual Championship test will take place on September 2.

The scores from the Team and Individual Championship tests will be combined to determine the overall team results and medals.


Women's Goalball - (Ashlie Andrews, Penticton, BC; Whitney Bogart, Marathon, ON; Amy Kneebone, Charlottetown, PEI; Jill MacSween, Halifax, ON; Nancy Morin, Longueuil, QC; Cassie Orgeles, Nepean, ON; Coach: Janice Dawson, Calgary, AB) came out strong and took an early lead with a hard throw by Amy Kneebone at 3:34 in the first half. Sweden responded with a bouncing shot to make it 1-1 before the buzzer.

The second half saw a quick goal from Sweden in the first few minutes followed by a fast paced back and forth in front of a packed audience at the Copperbox. In the end, Canada was unable to get past the Swedes, chalking up a 2-1 loss in their first match of the Games.

Men's Goalball - (Brendan Gaulin, Vancouver, BC; Bruno Hache, Dorval, QC; Mario Caron, St-Eustache, QC; Ahmad Zeividavi, Vancouver, BC; Simon Tremblay, Alma, QC; Doug Ripley, New Westminster. BC) took on Korea in their third match of preliminaries today.

After going down 4-0 in the first half, Canada rallied back to take the match 5-4 in the final minute of play. With three goals by Brendan Gaulin and two from veteran Mario Caron, Canada demonstrated they are here to compete. Canada plays Algeria tomorrow in their quest for a place in the medal rounds.


Canadians Tony Walby (Ottawa, ON) and Tim Rees (Victoria, BC) ended their judo competition today in the +100Kg and -100Kg divisions.

Walby (Ottawa, ON) had a great start of the day when throwing his opponent to the ground and winning his opening match over France by ippon.

"This felt great!" said Walby after his first match against France. "I was nervous at first but once I got a grip, it was all gone and I just played my judo. I heard my coach and nobody else. This is a real experience. My wife and 17-week-old baby are in the stands with other members of my family. This is all that matters for me. I'll remember for the rest of my life that she was here for my last fight."

Walby was defeated in his second match against Cuban Jimenez Dominguez and moved on to the repêchage. He suffered a second loss against Paralympic Champion Ilham Zakiyev from Azerbaïdjan in the evening, ending his first participation in the Paralympic Games.

Tim Rees (Victoria, BC) suffered a loss in his first match against British favourite Joe Ingram. He did not move on to repêchage.

"He was stronger than I expected," said Rees. "One decent attack I did with him at the end is actually what got me countered. Too bad I didn't win but the crowd was good. I was here to fight and the crowd got a good one I believe."


Rower Joan Reid (Enderby, BC) qualified for the A Final on Sunday by finishing second (5:49.77) in the repechage. She will be competing in her first final in a Paralympic Games.

"I'm just really happy I made it into the A final," said Reid. "Anything after that is gravy."

The mixed fours with cox (Meghan Montgomery, Victoria; Vicky Nolan, Toronto; David Blair, Ottawa; Tony Theriault, Nanaimo; and Kristen Kit (cox), London, ON) finished third in their rep (3:28.82) and will compete in the B final Sunday.


In sailing after race one, Paul Tingley (Halifax, NS) sat fourth in the One Person Keel Boat and was eighth in race two.

Stacie Louttit (Victoria, BC) and John McRoberts (Victoria, BC) finished fourth in the Two Person Mixed Boat - SKUD-18 in race one and were third in race two.

In the Three Person Keel Boat - Sonar (Logan Campbell, Saskatoon; Scott Lutes, Montreal; Bruce Millar, Victoria) were sitting fifth after race one and were ninth in the second race. Tomorrow sees races three and four in all three boats.


In shooting, Doug Blessin (Port Coquitlam, BC) did not make the final in the mixed R5-10m Air Rifle Prone after finishing 25th in the qualification match.

"I started out well but I sort of tensed up," said Blessin. "I didn't realize it until the nine showed up on the scoreboard. After that I knew I wasn't going to get into the final eight so I relaxed and shot better."

Christos Trifonids (Vancouver, BC) also did not advance to the final 8 in the mixed R3-10m Air Rifle Prone, finishing 26th.

"I know I have it in me to do it," said Chris Trifonidis. "It's just being able to do it at the right time. You have to practice the way you compete and compete the way you practice. If you do that, the nerves won't get to you at the Games."


In the women's S8 100 breaststroke, Katarina Roxon of Stephenville, N.L., produced her best swim of the competition to place fifth in 1:27.07.  That was over a second and half faster than her time in the prelims but just short of her personal best.

"I'm pleased with that performance," said Roxon, competing at her second Paralympics. "In the final I stretched my stroke a lot more because in the prelims I was stroking faster and that just slowed me down.  It wasn't a personal best but that improvement from the prelims is really good."

In the women's S11 50 freestyle, Amber Thomas of Drayton Valley, B.C., clocked a personal best 32.94 for sixth spot.  "I had a really good prelims so I just tried to go even harder in the final," said Thomas.  "The technique is definitely there so it augurs well for my best events later this week."

In the women's S7 100 breaststroke final, Sarah Mehain of Vernon, B.C., and Brianna Nelson of Victoria were seventh and eighth respectively.

Other Canadian men's results, Nathan Stein of Surrey, B.C., the 50 free silver medallist,  was ninth in the S10 100 butterfly missing a berth in the final by 0.04 seconds.  Isaac Bouckley of Whitby, Ont., was 17th.

Other Canadian women's results, Brianna Jennett-McNeill of Russell, Ont., was ninth in the S10 100 butterfly, Rhea Schmidt of Winnipeg ninth in the S13 50 freestyle and Valérie Drapeau of Montreal 13th in the S5 200 freestyle.


Capitalizing on the strength of their defence, the Canadian Women's Wheelchair Basketball Team stormed out of the gates against Australia Saturday evening and hung on to win 57 - 50.

An eight point run in the first quarter gave the Canucks a 14-6 lead heading into the second frame. By halftime the Aussies had narrowed the gap to a single point (33-32) and the game remained close until the final minutes. Janet McLachlan, of Vancouver, BC sealed the victory for Canada following up back-to-back free throws with a clutch field goal that effectively put the game out of reach for Australia. She finished with a game-high 28 points and 21 rebounds.

The Canadian women will look to continue the win streak Sunday September 2 at 3:15 p.m. against Brazil.

The combination of Canada's passing game and scoring depth proved insurmountable for the Polish Men's Wheelchair Basketball Team who fell to the Canadians 83-65 at North Greenwich Arena Saturday. With the win Canada secures a berth into the quarterfinals with two preliminary round games remaining.

Once again Patrick Anderson was in a league of his own potting 34 points, 12 assists, and nine rebounds - all game highs. Richard Peter, of Vancouver, BC added 12 points, Wonowon, BC's Bo Hedges scored nine, and both David Eng, of Montreal, QC, and Toronto, Ontario's Adam Lancia contributed with eight points.

The Canadian men will also continue preliminary round action on Sunday September 2 at 3:15 p.m., facing-off against Germany at the Basketball Arena to decide who will remain the only undefeated team in Pool B.


In singles, Joel Dembe, Toronto (ON) lost his first round match 2-6 2-6. He was playing Dave Phillipson (GBR), 21st ranked player in the world.

Philippe Bédard, Bromont (QC) won his first match 7-5 6-2 against the Moroccan Lhaj Boukartacha. Bédard advanced to the round of 32 where he will play fifth-seeded Gustavo Fernandez (ARG).

About the Canadian Paralympic Committee

The Canadian Paralympic Committee is a non-profit, private organization with 46 member sports organizations dedicated to strengthening the Paralympic movement. The Canadian Paralympic Committee's vision is to be the world's leading Paralympic nation. Its mission is to lead the development of a sustainable Paralympic sport system in Canada to enable athletes to reach the podium at the Paralympic Games. By supporting Canadian Paralympic athletes and promoting their success, the Canadian Paralympic Committee inspires all Canadians with a disability to get involved in sport through programs delivered by its member organizations.

Follow Your Team: #London2012 #GoCanadaGo


For further information:

Alison Korn
Press Chief
Canadian Paralympic Team
London : 07510 875 867

Judy Joseph-Black
Assistant Press Chief 
Canadian Paralympic Team
London : 07510 875 869

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