With little over three months until this summer's IPC Swimming World Championships in Glasgow, 18-year old S12 swimmer Hannah Russell could not be in better form.
Faced with the most difficult qualification standards the British swimmers have ever been set, Russell comfortably booked her spot on the team for Glasgow at the Trials in April, winning two golds, a silver and a bronze in the MC events in the process.
But while post-Trials swims are typically slower with athletes on a come-down from the excitement of a major event, Russell has gone the opposite way.
Competing at the IDM Meet in Berlin just two weeks after Trials, the Manchester High Performance swimmer achieved two significant milestones in setting a British record and breaking the minute mark for the first time over 100m Freestyle, then smashing the S12 world record over 400m Free despite not having PB'd in that event since the London 2012 Paralympics.
AquaZone magazine found her, unsurprisingly, in high spirits when we caught up with her at her training base in Manchester.
Hi Hannah - how pleased were you with those swims in Berlin?
I was really, really happy to be able to convert swims from the trials and then perform even better in some of my races in Berlin. It’s given me a lot more confidence going forward and I can’t wait to see what happens next.
British record in the 100m Free and world record in the 400m Free - had you been working a lot on your freestyle technique?
I’ve always had the dream and the goal to try and go sub minute on the 100m Freestyle and it’s taken me four years to try and do that!
When I got told my time, I was just so happy to finally achieve one of those goals which I’d set myself. Going on to the 400m Freestyle, I’d set targets and I was trying to do things which I’ve been doing in training and to focus on the small technical things. I managed to pull it off and to do a PB in my 400 Free, I was absolutely ecstatic because coming from London it was one of my main events and then I had a bit of a drop off so to come back on top of it shows that everything is going really well at the moment.