PLYMOUTH Leander’s Reece Dunn had said he wanted to make a big impression at his first major championships – and he definitely did that on Monday evening at the London Aquatics Centre.
Dunn broke his own S14 200m freestyle world record to win gold for Great Britain in front of a bumper home crowd at the World Para-Swimming Championships.
The Leander star had almost taken it too easier in the morning heats, only qualifying fifth in 1:57.70 minutes, which was nearly three seconds off his personnel best and record time.
But he showed his true form in the final. Despite being out in lane two, Dunn destroyed the rest of the field, extending his lead at every turn. He ended up knocking more than half-a-second off the world record he had only set in the summer in Berlin with a sensational time of 1:52.96.
His team-mates Tom Hamer and Jordan Catchpole made it a clean sweep of the medals for Great Britain by taking silver and bronze in 1:55.19 and 1:56.23, respectively.
“It was important to make a big impression at my first major international with the (GB) team,” said a delighted Dunn afterwards.
“I went into that final with a massive attitude and was just trying to improve on the time from Berlin a few months ago.
“I’m training alongside some big guys now and my training regime has probably doubled in terms of metres and I’ve moved from sprints to mid-distance, which helps with my 200 a lot more.”
Hamer added: “It’s pretty incredible getting a one-two-three with my team-mates, so it’s very special.”
Dunn will also compete in the individual 200m IM on Saturday and the 100m butterfly on Sunday. He is also likely to feature in the S14 mixed 4x100m freestyle relay on Thursday.