Para-swimmer Nicolas Turbide of Quebec City and the men’s wheelchair relay capped a five-medal day for Canada with bronze medal performances on Saturday evening at the Paralympic Games.
Earlier Saturday, wheelchair racer Michelle Stilwell of Parksville, B.C., got Canada rolling with her second gold of the Games in the women’s T52 100-m. Then on Rio waters Canadian sailors collected silver and bronze in their 11th and final races.
Turbide clocked 59.55 seconds for his first career Paralympic Games medal just slightly off the 59.53 he clocked for his first sub minute time and Americas record in the morning preliminaries.
In athletics, the men’s T53-54 4X400-m relay took the bronze with Brent Lakatos, Dorval, Curtis Thom, Mississauga, Ont., Tristan Smyth, Surrey, B.C., and Alexandre Dupont, St-Rémi, Que. It is Lakatos’ fourth medal of the Games to go along with a gold, silver and another bronze in individual events.
‘’This medal is very special,’’ said Lakatos. ‘’All the others are just by myself. This one I get to share with my teammates and friends. It is just really great tonight.”
Stilwell, the 42-year-old MLA in the B.C. legislature, clocked a Games record 19.42 seconds for her second victory at the Games and her seventh career Paralympics medal – six of which are gold.
“The goal was to come here and top the podium in both my races,’’ said Stilwell, the 400-m winner here as well. ‘’The plan my coach and I Peter Lawless have put in place and the work we have done for the past 12 years has come through.
‘’I am happy to bring back the gold for Canada.”
She edged Kerry Morgan of the U.S. second in 19.96 and Marieke Vervoort of Belgium third in 20.12.
In sailing, John McRoberts and Jackie Gay of Victoria took silver in the 2-person keelboat (Skud 18) while Paul Tingley, Halifax; Logan Campbell, Saskatoon; Scott Lutes, Montreal won the bronze medal in the 3-person keelboat (Sonar).
In the wheelchair rugby, Canada lost 60-55 against the USA in the semi-finals and faces Japan Sunday morning at 9 a.m. for the bronze. That is the last competitive event for Canada at these Games.
Canada got off to a rocky start when the smothering American defensive – which double-teamed Zak Madell for most of the game – forced them to burn two of their four timeouts. At the end of the first, the USA was only up 14-13.
“When you lose that turnover battle, it’s hard to fight back,” said co-captain Trevor Hirschfield after the game. “At this level, there just aren’t that many chances to create turnovers.”
Canada now has 29 medals (8-10-11) for 13th in the country standings.
Story and Photo from the Canadian Paralympic Committee | Paralympic.ca