Britain’s Emma Wiggs dedicated her eighth Paracanoe Sprint World Championship gold medal to her friends and family, as she stormed to a world record victory in Szeged.

After sustaining a career-threatening wrist injury at the start of the year the 39-year-old has endured a tough season, which saw her doubt her credentials going into the competition.

But the reigning Paralympic champion recorded a blistering time of 56.10 seconds and led from the start to successfully defend her VL2 200m title.

While Wiggs acknowledges she still has improvements to make in the KL2 200m event – in which she competes in the A final alongside GB teammate Charlotte Henshaw on Friday – the former sitting volleyball star admits her latest accolade is one of the sweetest.

“It means so much to me,” she said. “It’s been a really hard year and I’m so happy to have been able to do it for my wife Gemma, my family and my friends.

“I’ve been pretty up and down but they never stopped believing in me and I’m really proud to have got over the line.

“It’s amazing to get a world record, I can’t do much more than that. But really, it’s all down to them because when you doubt yourself you need support and I’m so grateful.

“Now I need to focus on stepping on again and try to become more competitive in the kayak.

“I’m a long way off in that event at the moment and Charlotte is smashing it – she’s a phenomenal athlete – so I think I’ve just got to enjoy it and not worry too much.

“The win in the va’a has given me bags of confidence, so we’ll see what I can do and where I can go.”

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