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Aussie cyclist Paige Greco wins first gold of Tokyo Paralympics, breaks own record

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Paige Greco’s name is now destined to be on the history books as the Australian cyclist became the first para-athlete to clinch the first gold medal at the ongoing Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

Paige Greco ‘can’t believe’ she won gold in her Paralympics debut

1st Paralympic gold medal goes to Paige Greco of Australia
Australia’s Paige Greco wins the Gold Medal in the Track Cycling Women’s C3 3000m Individual Pursuit at the Izu Velodrome in Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo, Wednesday, August 25, 2021. (Thomas Lovelock for OIS via AP)

Paige Greco, who displayed stupendous form on Wednesday, churned out a record-setting performance in the gold medal race in C1-C3 class 3,000 metre individual pursuit, hosted at the Izu Velodrome.

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The Aussie defeated Wang Xiaomei of China while smashing her own world record by almost a whopping eight seconds in the heat, on top of a second and a half reduction to clock a new world record of 3min 50.815sec in the final.

“I still can’t believe it. I keep looking down and seeing (the gold medal). It’s not really sunk in yet,” [H/T Olympics] said Greco after her monumental triumph, who left behind silver medallist Xiaomei by four seconds. The latter, however, was also able to smash Greco’s previous record in the heat.

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The 24-year-old suffers from cerebral palsy, which impacts the right side of Greco’s body. An Exercise Science Degree holder from the University of South Australia, Greco made her breakthrough in 2019 when she became the Cycling Australia Para Female Track Cyclist of the Year.

A member of the Port Adelaide Cycling Club, Greco won gold at the UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships in 2019 in the Women’s Time Trial C3 event, and also bagged triple golds at the 2019 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships, in the Women’s 3km Pursuit C3, Women’s 500m Time Trial C3 and the Women’s 3km Pursuit C3, along with a silver in the Women’s Scratch Race C3 event.

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Last year, Greco clinched gold at the UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships which took place in Milton, Ontario, in the Women’s Individual Pursuit C3 event. Now, she has won the first of the 24 gold medals up for grabs at the Tokyo Paralympics.

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Saikat Banerjee
Saikat Banerjee
A wordsmith who indulges in the world of combat sports, Saikat is an MMA, boxing, and arm wrestling content writer at The MMA India Show and The Sports Room. Apart from combat sports, he also engages in Indian sports content at The Sports India Show. Currently pursuing an MBA from Jadavpur University, Saikat's other interests lie in motorcycling, working out, and travelling.
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