BIRMINGHAM, United Kingdom — Canadian swimming star Summer McIntosh has added to her burgeoning medal case.
On the heels of her success at the world aquatic championships last month, the 15-year-old from Toronto captured Canada’s first gold medal at the Commonwealth Games, winning the 400-metre individual medley in stunning fashion on Friday.
McIntosh, who became the first Canadian to win two gold medals at a single championship in Budapest, broke both the Games and her own national record, touching the wall in four minutes 29.01 seconds.
Australian Kiah Melverton finished 7.77 seconds behind McIntosh for the silver medal.
McIntosh is the third fastest performer in the event’s history and is closing the gap on the world record of 4:26.36 set by Hungarian Katinka Hosszu at the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.
“I was excited to re-do my time from (the) worlds and see what I can do to get better,” McIntosh said. “I’ve been working on a lot of stuff in training so I can execute my 400 IM better than I did at (the) worlds, because I had so much room for improvement, and I still do.”
Katie Shanahan of Scotland was third in 4:39.37.
Ella Jansen of Burlington, Ont., was fifth and Tessa Cieplucha of Oakville, Ont., was eighth.
McIntosh won four medals at the worlds.
Earlier, Kelsey Mitchell, Sarah Orban and Lauriane Genest picked up Canada’s first medal when they raced to silver in track cycling’s women’s sprint team event.
“We wanted that gold but I just went in thinking that there’s nothing to lo
se and just gave it my 100%,” said Orban. “Stepping onto that podium doesn’t even feel real. I think I’m still trying to process everything. Being alongside my teammates made it that much more special.
“I’m so proud of both of them. We executed it well and hit our target of getting on the podium and just standing next to them made it that much more special.”
New Zealand won the gold-medal race in a time of 47.425 seconds, edging the Canadians who finished in 48.001.
The men’s sprint team of Ryan Dodyk, Tyler Rorke and Nick Wammes, moved to the bronze medal final, also against New Zealand, just missing the podium finishing 0.717 seconds behind the Kiwis to take fourth.
Canada’s men’s 3×3 basketball team went 1-1 on the opening day, beating Kenya 15-12, before dropping a 21-20 decision to Scotland.
Bikramjit Gill led Canada with five points and 10 rebounds against Kenya.
Gill said playing in 3×3 basketball’s Commonwealth debut is “phenomenal.”
“A lot of people look past it, but sometimes you’ve just got to be living in the moment, absorb what’s going on, see the people and see how excited they are,” Gill said. “The crowd gave us a lot of love, so I’m just happy to be here to be honest.”
Canada’s goal at the Games is to finish top-3 in the overall medal table. The Canadian team captured 82 medals at the Games four years ago in Australia.