American swims 200 IM in 2:42.20

ATHENS, Greece -- Rudy Garcia of the United States broke the
world record Sunday in the 200-meter individual medley, one of five
swimming world records to fall on the first day of heats at the
2004 Paralympics.

Garcia finished in 2 minutes 42.20 seconds, bettering by 3.62
seconds the 12-year-old mark set by Dutchman Joop Stokkel at the
Barcelona Paralympics.

World records also were set in the 100 butterfly by Australians
Sam Bramham (1:04.24) and Ben Austin (1:05.79). South Africa's
Natalie de Toit beat her own mark in the 100 butterfly with a 1:07.69,
and Brazil's Clodoaldo Silva broke the record in the men's 100
freestyle by almost three seconds, finishing in 1:19.36.

The Paralympics opened Friday and end Sept. 28.