Dame Sarah Storey became Great Britain’s most successful Paralympian after fighting back to take the 17th gold medal of her career.
Cycling star Storey powered home in the C4-5 road race to move past the 16-gold tally of former swimmer Mike Kenny, who she had matched on Tuesday by winning the C5 time trial.
On a glittering morning for Great Britain amidst the rain and gloom at the Fuji International Speedway, there was also a British one-two in the men’s C1-3 event, with Benjamin Watson taking ahead of compatriot Fin Graham.
Storey, who won her first five Paralympic golds in swimming before switching to the bike in Beijing in 2008, had trailed veteran German Kerstin Brachtendorf by 75 seconds at one stage of Thursday’s race.
But the 43-year-old showed her renowned strength and determination by hauling her rival in, ultimately snatching glory in a time of 2:21:51.
Fellow Briton Crystal Lane-Wright picked up her third silver of the Games by crossing the line seven seconds off the pace, with France’s Marie Patouillet completing the podium in 2:23:49.
“I couldn’t have imagined having eight Games, let alone winning medals at every Games, and 17 of those medals being gold,” said Storey, who had already eclipsed Kenny for total medals won, taking that count by 28 to 18 with Thursday’s win.
“It’s the dream I didn’t have coming true.
“I just wanted to be a British athlete, I wanted to compete for my country for as long as I possibly could, and to still be going strong in Games number eight is truly amazing.
Watson, meanwhile, won his gold in a time of 2:04:23, a minute and and 20 seconds ahead of Graham.
It was Watson’s second gold of the Games, after he took the Men’s C3 Time Trial on Tuesday.
It also comes less than three months after he was seriously injured when he crashed into a house at the World Championships in Portugal, suffering lacerations to his hands, arms, legs, back and groin.
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Social media moment
Manuel Antonio Vaz da Veiga, guide to Cape Verde’s Keula Nidreia Pereira Semedo, popped the question after the women’s T11 200m heats.
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What’s coming up on Thursday?
Rio champion Gordon Reid and runner-up Alfie Hewett will each hope to return to the men’s wheelchair tennis singles final.
Discus thrower Dan Greaves seeks a sixth Paralympics medal, while taekwondo makes its maiden Games appearance, canoeing competition begins.
And there is another hectic schedule in the pool. Maisie Summers-Newton, who already has two golds at the Games, and Ellie Simmonds go in the Women’s 400m Freestyle – S6 final, along with fellow Briton Grace Harvey.
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