Nikita was part of the New Zealand Paralympic swimming team and not only has Howarth done New Zealand proud while competing but, according to Paralympics New Zealand, at 13 she is also the youngest ever Kiwi Paralympian.

Howarth competed in three different events in both heats and finals and the more she swum in London, the better she got.

Competing in the heats of the S7 women’s 50m butterfly on day two of the Paralympics, Howarth finished 11th in a time of 40.94.

She followed that up the next day by finishing 9th in the SB8 women’s 100m breast stroke heat in 1:33.48.

Then, swimming in the SM7 women’s 200m individual medley heat she qualified fifth fastest for the final in a time of 3:13.77.

She swam even faster in the final of that event, shaving three seconds off her heat time and finishing sixth in a time of 3:10.48.

Cambridge Swimming Club committee member Bob Rout said the club was “very, very proud” of Nikita’s achievement.

“She is the elite swimmer at Cambridge Swimming Club and she has such amazing, potential, potential which has been developed in our very own community.

“She’s from a great family in our community and we’re all so proud of her.”

Mr Rout said he thanked the Cambridge community for all the support they had shown Nikita during her efforts to get to London.  “It’s just been overwhelming.”

Before Nikita competed, New Zealand Paralympics swim coach Simon Mayne told the Paralympics New Zealand website that their tactic was straight forward.

As plain as it may sound, keeping it simple is a recipe he and the team swear by.

“If we try and make it too complicated and start worrying about things then you don’t do your best.

“We just try to make it as normal as possible, just get out and do your thing, try and get into the zone and do the things you’ve been working at.”

Article by Cambridge Edition
Photo by Getty Images

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