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News posted on Friday 17th May, 2024

Para Swimming Team Ready to Race in Singapore

10 Adults stand for a group photos on the side of a indoor swimming pool

The New Zealand Para team travelled to Singapore on Monday ahead of the 2024 Citi Para Swimming World Series held from the Friday 17 to Sunday 19 May. The competition will be held at the OCBC Aquatic Centre, a World class facility that has been host to the FINA Swimming World Cup and ASEAN Para Games. The timing of the World Series is critical for our Paralympic team as it is their last opportunity for international racing before the 2024 Paris Paralympics.

The team consists of six swimmers, with Paralympian Jesse Reynolds (Hamilton Aquatics & RPC – Waikato), Paralympian Tupou Neiufi (Pukekohe), Asher Smith-Franklin (North Shore), and newly announced Paralympian debutants Joshua Wilmer (Pukekohe), Lili-Fox Mason (Wharenui), and Gabriella Smith (Vikings).

Swimming NZ’s Paralympic Programme Lead, Simon Mayne, knows it’s an important step in the Paralympic build up.

“The purpose of the trip is to get the team together to race internationally against the best in the world and to prepare the athletes one last time before going into Paris.”

Day 1 of competition kicks off with Willmer (S8) and Reynolds (S9) in the Men’s 100m Freestyle. The Women’s 100m Freestyle will be contested by Neiufi (S8), Mason (S10), and Smith (S10). Smith-Franklin (S14) will conclude the day in the Men’s 200m Freestyle.

Day 2 sees Lili-Fox Mason (S10) swim the event she qualified for the Paralympics in, the Women’s 400m Freestyle. Joshua Wilmer (SB8) also will swim his qualification event in the Men’s 100m Breaststroke, along with Smith-Franklin (SB14). Smith (SB9) and Neiufi (SB8) will both be competing in the Women’s 100m Breaststroke.

The final day of competition is the biggest day for the team with 6 events being contested. Jesse Reynolds (S9) steps up for his main event, the Men’s 100m Backstroke, alongside Willmer (S9) with Neiufi (S8) in the Women’s 100m Backstroke. Neiufi (S8) has a quick turn around as she is straight into the Women’s 50m Freestyle. Smith-Franklin (SM14) concludes his weekend with the Men’s 200m Individual Medley. Gaby Smith (SM10) gets her chance in her Paralympic qualifying event in the Women’s 200m Individual Medley. The meet concludes with Mason (S10) swimming in the Women’s 100m Butterfly.

After the conclusion of racing on Sunday, the athletes and staff will fly out to the Gold Coast where they will partake in a two week training camp with the intention of building their endurance as much as possible before the final push to Paris.

Follow along with the action over the weekend on our social media channels to stay up-to-date with the results as they occur in Singapore.

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