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Caledon’s Routliffe on top down under

August 23, 2018   ·   0 Comments

Tess Routliffe showed off her wide range of talents in the pool in the Pan Pacific Para Swimming Championships earlier this month in Cairns, Australia.

Competing against athletes from Canada, the United States, Australia, Japan, Brazil, Costa Rica, India, New Zealand, Singapore, and South Africa, the Caledon native was able to come home with a pair of medals.

Opening up her games on Day two of the competition, Routliffe began with a fourth-place finish in the 100-metre SM7 freestyle, a finish she said she was “pretty pleased” with.

“Our goal was just to kind of get in and see where we’re at. I don’t race this event as often as my other events,” said Routliffe. “After that, I was excited to get into the final and be more confident, just because we had gotten the feeling out and now it was just about getting the time out. I was happy with my time. It’s a season best, so it was pretty happy all around.”

It was in the breaststroke category that Routlife got her first taste of victory, swimming to gold in the SM7 finals. Her time of 1:32.71 was a lifetime best.

Day four of the Championships saw Routliffe back in the pool for the 50-metre butterfly, where a personal best of 36.80 was enough to earn her the bronze medal.

Routliffe said she was “really happy” with her performance.

“We’ve been working on the 50 fly since before the Commonwealth Games. I was kind of forced to do it at Commonwealth and we opened a new door, looking at what I could do. I’m really happy with how that’s going and it’s becoming one of my better events,” said Routliffe, who had set her previous PB of 37.48 on June 2 at the British Para-Swimming International in England. “It feels good to come out faster than a few of my competitors, just because they’ve always been faster than me in that race. It gives me a lot of confidence to be able to come back and beat some of them.”

“Tess’ race was unbelievably good,” said Mike Thompson, Routliffe’s head coach at CHP-Quebec in Montreal where she trains. “We weren’t really sure what to expect because all four of the American girls were faster than her best time going into tonight. But the one thing I know about Tess is she never doesn’t race and she never doesn’t catch somebody. That’s just the type of person she is.”

Routliffe previously took part in the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio, where she earned a silver medal in the women’s 200-metre individual medley SM7. Getting her start with the Dorado Stars in Caledon at just three years old, her other major accomplishments include four gold medals at the 2015 Parapan American Games, as well as reaching the finals of six events at the 2014 Pan Pacific Championship.

         

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