Hannah Miley banished memories of a disappointing London 2012 by claiming 400m individual medley gold at the World short course in Istanbul.
Miley, 23, finished a surprise fifth in her favoured event at London 2012 but produced a sublime swim to beat China's double Olympic champion Ye Shiwen.
"I am really really pleased with that," the Garioch swimmer told BBC Sport.
"If that hadn't happened in London [failing to win a medal] I probably wouldn't be standing where I am today."
Miley, whose time of four minutes, 23.14 seconds was a championship record, took the lead in the breaststroke but had to withstand an incredible fight-back to hold off Shiwen in the closing metres of the race.
"I was having to hang on for dear life but that is one of the things I love doing," admitted Miley, who won European gold last month.
"At these kinds of competitions you are going to be up against the best in the world and those who have Olympic medals, so it's a case of just standing up there on the day to be counted and see who can come out on top.
"I have usually struggled with short course [25m racing] but this season it seems to have clicked which I am really happy with. I just have to convert that to long course [50m races] now."
Team-mate Jemma Lowe added further cause for celebration by claiming an impressive bronze medal in the 200m butterfly final.
Lowe, 22, who was sixth in the 200m butterfly Olympic final, was delighted with her performance.
"I think all athletes dream of winning a medal at an Olympic Games and unfortunately that didn't happen for me. But I think I have to move on," Lowe told BBC Sport.
"I have another Olympics in me and a world medal is brilliant, so we move on."
Great Britain's 4x200m freestyle relay team, which saw Hannah Miley anchored, finished fifth in a race won by the United States.
Elsewhere Georgia Davies set a new personal best of 57.41 en-route to qualifying third quickest for Thursday's 100m backstroke final, with team-mate Elizabeth Simmonds narrowly missing out.
US five-time Olympic champion Ryan Lochte won the championship's first gold with victory in the 200m freestyle, and rounded the evening off with another title alongside team-mates in the 4x100m freestyle relay.