What a Dame… Sarah storms to her 15th gold

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British Cycling chief executive Brian Facer marvelled at Sarah’s latest achievement in Tokyo, as she smashed her world record en route to retaining the women’s C5 3000m individual pursuit gold at the Izu Velodrome.

If the 43-year-old defends her C5 time trial and C4-5 road race crowns next week she would move on to 17 golds, one more than swimmer Mike Kenny claimed between 1976 and 1988.

Mr Facer said: “She’s just superhuman. To have had the mindset, the ability and the body to be able to go on and do this, when others could give up and retire, is just phenomenal.

“It shows us all that if we work hard we can achieve great things in our own lives. Dame Sarah Storey is an inspiration.”

An emotional Dame Sarah said: “It’s been overwhelming to try and keep pushing on the pedals to go faster and faster. I never expected to go as quick as I did this morning, but I’m glad I did.”

She pipped fellow Briton Crystal Lane-Wright, who won silver, in a repeat of the result at the last Paralympics in 2016.

Crystal said: “As much as I’m up against Sarah, it’s me versus me all the time. To get such a big personal best, that’s my medal.”

Great Britain got off to a strong start on the opening day of the Games by winning six medals.

GB’s defending champions Steve Bate and Adam Duggleby won silver in the men’s B 4000m individual pursuit.

Toni Shaw, 18, picked up our first pool medal as she took bronze in the S9 400m freestyle in her first Paralympics. Reece Dunn narrowly missed out on gold in his Paralympic debut in the men’s S14 100m butterfly.

In the S5 200m freestyle Tully Kearney, 24, was happy to settle for silver after missing Rio 2016 because of injury.

In Rio Britain won 147 medals and in London 2012, 120.

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