KATHLEEN Dawson polished off a superlative European Swimming Championships with yet another trip to the podium last night but it was the slice of history that thrilled the 23-year-old most.

Her third gold among the four medals acquired over seven days in Budapest arrived in the very last race, teaming up with Molly Renshaw, Laura Stephens and Anna Hopkin to dominate the women’s 4x100m medley in a championship best of 3:54.01 as the UK finished top of the overall table.

Dawson was a ferocious catalyst, finally capturing the European 100m backstroke record that she has long coveted with an initial leg of 58.08 secs, surpassing Gemma Spofforth’s mark that dated back to the era of long-since banned textile suits.

Only three females have ever gone faster. All are expected to await when the Olympics begin in 60 days time. If they had not feared the Fifer before, they should now.

“It's great to finally get it, especially here,” she acknowledged. “It's amazing seeing the British team doing so well … that really lit a fire under me so I think I knew I was going to make it. Great Britain has just been doing so well at this meet. Everyone’s exceeded expectations and it’s really promising for the summer.”

Her Stirling University team-mate Duncan Scott will also check back in at base sporting five medals with his anchor leg instrumental in victory in the men’s 4x100m medley in 3:28.59, also a championship best. It delivered Adam Peaty an astonishing haul of four golds at a fourth successive Europeans, with Luke Greenbank and James Guy’s contributions underlining the potential for a wave of British relay medals in Tokyo.

“For us to be able to do that on the last night is exciting for what is to come in the summer,” said Scott. “You can look at so many different areas of that that we can improve on individually but then also as a team as well.

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“It's going be tough because there are teams still looking to qualify for the Olympics so we had to be on it this morning and we were - and that was a really good swim from everyone.”

Cassie Wild pulled out one of the performances of the week with silver in the 200m backstroke. The 20-year-old from Edinburgh surpassed Dawson’s existing Scottish record with a time of 2:07.74, inside the Olympic qualifying mark for the event.

For her Sunday morning efforts in the relay heats, she also pocketed a gold but her solo display left her buoyant. “That was my 12th race, so I'm just absolutely thrilled,” Wild said. “The 200m is always something I didn't like, to be honest, I'd always try to avoid doing it! But everyone has said that with my stroke I could do a good 200m back and I used to say, 'no!' Now I've done one, so I'm probably going to be doing a few more.”

Italy’s Margherita Panziera retained the title in a championship record of 2:06.08 with Katie Shanahan sixth in a personal best of 2:09.90 in the 16-year-old Glaswegian’s maiden international final.

Ben Proud ceded the 50m freestyle crown he picked up in Glasgow in 2018 by taking silver in 21.69 secs behind Finnish goliath Ari Liukkonen. There were also bronzes for Guy in the 100m butterfly and Max Litchfield in the 400m individual medley.