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Incredible 20 minutes for Australia with two gold medals in a row

Australia's Emily Petricola. (Photo by Tim Goode/PA Images via Getty Images)
25th August, 2021
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Australia has made the perfect start to the Tokyo Paralympics, winning the first two gold medals of the Games.

Track cyclist Paige Greco broke her own world record in the C3 3000m individual pursuit at the Izu Velodrome and a few minutes later, teammate Emily Petricola lapped American rival Shawn Morelli to take out the C4 3000m pursuit.

Compatriot Meg Lemon lost her C4 pursuit bronze medal ride-off to Canadian Shawn Keely.

Greco, 24, easily beat China’s Wang Xiaomei in their gold medal ride-off on Wednesday.

The Adelaide cyclist, who has cerebral palsy, clocked three minutes 50.815 seconds and Wang rode 3:54.975.

Greco also broke her own world record earlier on Wednesday when she qualified fastest in 3:52.283.

Petricola made a shaky start against Morelli and looked in trouble when she was .951 of a second down after the first lap.

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But the 41-year-old from Queensland, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis 14 years ago, then dominated their ride-off and caught Morelli well inside the last kilometre.

Petricola also broke her own world record when she qualified fastest in 3:38.061.

Lemon trailled early against Keely and could not pull back the deficit, losing by more than a second.

All three Australians are making their Paralympic debuts while Greco and Petricola came into the Games as defending world champions in their individual pursuit categories.

© AAP

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