Sept. 7, 2008
BEIJING, China - Former Auburn swimmer Dave Denniston opened his Paralympic schedule Sunday night as he competed in the 50-meter backstroke in Beijing, China.
Denniston clocked a time of 53.07 in the preliminary, finishing 14th overall and missing out on a trip to the finals. China's He Junquan posted the top time in the prelim, setting a new world record with a time of 35.04.
Paralympians are classified in 10 different levels for athletes with physical disabilities, ranging from S1 (severely disabled) to S10 (minimally disabled). Denniston competes at the S5 level in the backstroke and butterfly, and the S4 level in the breaststroke.
The 50m backstroke was the first of four events for Denniston at the 2008 Paralympics. He will also compete in the 50m butterfly, 100m breaststroke and is in the pool for the 4x50m medley relay. Next on the schedule is the 50m butterfly with Denniston slated to swim the preliminary at 9:12 p.m., Tuesday.
For more information on the Paralympic Games, check out the official Web site at http://en.paralympic.beijing2008.cn/. A free video Webcast is also available at http://www.universalsports.com.