Quick Facts

How acquired
Vision Impairment – Juvenile Optic Atrophy
Date of Birth
March 27, 1972
Hallet Cove, SA
Teacher support
Started Competing
First Competed for Australia
Games Experience

Seoul 1988, Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008, London 2012

Career Highlights

Winning gold in Athens 2004

Greatest Moment

Won the able-bodied Australian All-School pole vault competition in 1989


Five-time Paralympic gold medallist Kieran Modra is one of the most decorated and respected members of the Australian track cycling team. A pioneer in tandem cycling, Kieran has competed many times as a Paralympian and at various sporting championships over his career spanning two decades.

It was Kieran’s time to shine at the 2004 Athens Paralympic Games. He won a gold medal in the 200m sprint and the 4km time trial and won bronze in the 110km road race. He also competed in the 1km individual pursuit and the 40km time trial, making him the first ever cyclist to compete in all five cycling events at a Paralympic Games. Kieran was named the 2004 Australian Male Paralympian of the Year, a just reward for his stellar year.

The Beijing Games proved just as fruitful, winning gold in the individual pursuit in world record time and a bronze medal in the 1km time trial. Kieran maintained the rage since the 2008 Games, breaking the world record in the 4km individual pursuit at the 2011 World Championships. He won gold in the same event at the 2011 Oceania Championships.

Despite a severe accident sustained while training in the lead up to the London Games, where he broke two vertebrae in his neck and one in his lower spine after colliding with a car, Kieran’s freakish abilities again prevailed. Together with his pilot Scott McPhee, the South Australian again won gold in the 4km individual pursuit, achieving the rare feat of gold in the same event at three consecutive Games.

A veteran of seven Paralympic Games, he has the distinction of representing Australia in three sports: athletics, swimming and cycling. In 1987, Kieran began pole vaulting and in 1988 he represented his country at the Seoul Paralympics in javelin. After suffering a knee injury, Kieran took up swimming to aid his recovery and began swimming competitively in 1990. He became so good that he made the 1992 Barcelona Paralympic swim team and won bronze in the 100m and 200m backstroke. It wasn’t until 1995 that Kieran took up the sport he made his own.

Kieran’s talents are not restricted to the sporting genre. He is gifted at the age old skills of tatting and crochet and also tries his hand at movie editing. It would also not surprise to catch Kieran at the beach kite surfing or sitting on his couch watching James Bond films.

Sports & Disciplines

  • Sport: Cycling Disciplines: Individual pursuit Classification: B3
  • Sport: Cycling Disciplines: Road race Classification: B3
  • Disciplines: Road time trial Classification: B3