Paralympics: Two more golds for NZ

Gold medalists Phillipa Gray and Laura Thompson pose with their medals after winning the Women's Individual B Pursuit. Photo / Getty Images
Gold medalists Phillipa Gray and Laura Thompson pose with their medals after winning the Women's Individual B Pursuit. Photo / Getty Images

New Zealander Cameron Leslie has smashed his own 150m individual medley world record to defend his Paralympic title in London this morning NZT.

Leslie's time of 2:25.98 was just under five seconds better than his effort in Beijing and again left the competition scrambling in his wake, with Martin Sanchez of Mexico the closest, picking up the silver medal in 2:39.55.

"There's no secret behind it, it's just all hard work," said Northlander Leslie. "That's the time we've been going for for a long time and it's bloody hugely satisfying to see it pull off like that."

Leslie, 22, was particularly impressed with his breaststroke leg. "We've been working hard on that, I don't know what the split was but I'm sure it will be exactly what we were going for.

"The idea was to get out to a good lead and build on that lead, rather than consolidate like I have in the past.

"When you think of a four-year campaign it's a very long time and to come and win a gold medal and succeed in all your goals along the way, that's special."

Mary Fisher has also had a successful time of it in the pool in London. The Wellington 19-year-old has been in three finals and has three medals to show for it and this morning she backed up her Paralympic record in qualifying for the 100m backstroke final by claiming the silver medal.

Fisher was just 12 hundredths of a second behind Rina Akiyama of Japan, who set a new Paralympic record of 1:19.50. Akiyama also holds the current world record.

Fisher swam 1:19.62, over a second quicker than she did last night. "I had a really really good heat swim and I couldn't believe I qualified first for the final by three splits, but tonight I gave it everything I possibly could have. I'm really, really happy," she said.

Fisher will enjoy four days off competition before returning for the SM11 women's 400m freestyle.

Anie Kelly-Costello finished sixth in the same final.

Phillipa Gray and Laura Thompson won New Zealand's first track cycling gold in the women's individual B pursuit, setting a world record along the way. The Southlanders also inked their name in the history books by claiming the country's first gold in the tandem discipline.

The pair recorded 3:31.5, smashing the old record of 3:36.36 which was set in 2009.

Their opponents from Ireland, who are the current world champions, could manage only 3:36.66.

"It's pretty heavy [the medal], it's definitely a better colour than bronze and it just feels amazing, I don't even think it's sunk in yet," Gray said minutes after the medal ceremony.

"The world record doesn't even feel real yet, nothing feels real, it's just a dream."

Michael Johnson won bronze in the R5 10m air rifle standing.

Danny McBride won his B final of the ASM 1x single sculls.

The New Zealand celebrated a four-medal haul overnight - two gold, one silver and a bronze to go with the three bronze, two gold and two silver medals that the team already have. They are 10th overall on the medal tally.

- APNZ

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