Friday, August 27, 2021

Mullen champions lower classifications

Andrew Mullen swam in the first of his individual races, competing in the heats of the S5 50m butterfly and voiced the need to showcase lower classifications on the world stage, on day three of the Tokyo Paralympic Games.

Mullen, who is trained by Ian Wright has not swam this event competitively for over three years, and the 24-year-old from City of Glasgow Swim Team finished 11th overall in a season’s best time of 39.01.

Afterwards he said,

“That wasn’t too bad. I’ve actually not swam the 50m fly competitively for an awfully long time. It’s just really another event to get into the feel of the competition, the flow of the call-room, the warm-up etc. My main focus coming into the meet has always been to help the 20pt relay guys qualify for the final and then focus on my 50m back later in the week. For me it was a solid heat swim.

“It has been a really different Games for me. I took quite a long time away from the sport after Rio. There was a period when I wasn’t sure I was going to come back. I took time away, fell in love with the sport again and I’m really fortunate to be back and really proud to be part of the team.

“I’m one of the elder statesmen of the team now, not that I’m particularly old, but seeing these young guys coming up definitely pushes me on to continue to get better on a day to day basis and I’ll hopefully put in some really strong performances later in the week and in competitions to follow.”

After yesterday’s 20pt relay, Mullen spoke passionately about the lower classifications, and continued the conversation saying,

“I think it’s really important to showcase lower classifications. When I was a young swimmer coming up through the ranks there was never really anyone in my class who was competing on the world stage, so I think it is important that young people with a slightly more severe disability, have role models and people they can look up to and strive to be similar to them. Hopefully if me and the relay guys can set a good example, then that’s a massive bonus and we are all incredibly privileged to be in that position.”

full details on all the ParalympicsGB swimmers, go to the British Swimming website.

The start lists, schedule and results can be found HERE.

Watch live coverage across Channel 4's platforms, including More4 and paralympics.channel4.com

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