Seoul 1988, Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008
Wally Lewis and Gary Bourne
Winning first ever gold medal and setting a world record at Paralympic Games
First ever Paralympic gold
Known by most as ‘Laces’ or the ‘Thrupp Myster’, Queensland’s Darren Thrupp is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to running and long jump. With Beijing his sixth Paralympics, he won’t be retiring any time soon, looking for his seventh Games in London.
Courtney Harbeck is a self-proclaimed chatterbox and although she didn’t make the finals at her first Paralympic Games, she is happy with her performances.
At the 2006 FESPIC Games, Courtney had her greatest athletic achievement, winning gold medals in the 100m and 200m sprints. The event was not all smooth sailing for Courtney, however, as it took her a while to adjust to the Malaysian way of preparing one of her favourite things: food. “I like my Aussie food!” she says.
Running in the Birds Nest at the Beijing Paralympics
Blink and you’ll miss Tahlia Rotumah as she flies down the race track. Tahlia was the proud winner of two silver medals in the sprints at the 2006 FESPIC Games in Malaysia, where she was happy to play the tourist in a theme park 16 storeys high in the middle of a shopping centre.
World record/gold medal in discus and silver in shot put at World Championships Netherlands 2006
Walking into the Opening Ceremony in Sydney 2000
Growing up in a family of basketball players, Amanda Fraser was always surrounded by sport. It wasn’t until she was 12 that her parents looked for a sport for her to participate in, mainly to help her self-confidence.
Following a search of what was available for athletes with a disability; Amanda first competed in athletics at the Queensland School Sports Athletics Championships, where she won three gold medals.
3 gold, 4 silver and 1 bronze at Beijing 2008; 2 gold, 2 silver and a bronze at the 2006 IPC Swimming World Championships
Becoming world champion in the 100m backstroke
Nicknamed ‘Pipes’, swimmer Peter Leek is determined to make a mark for himself. He left that mark in Beijing where he squashed the dreams of many swimmers by winning a medal in each of his events which included three gold, four silver and one bronze medal.
Sport & Disciplines
Disciplines: 50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, 400m freestyle 100m backstroke, 100m butterfly, 200m individual medley, 4x100m medley, 4x100m freestyle
When Patrick Donachie won gold in the 4x100m freestyle relay at the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games, little did he know that it would be 12 years before he would again have a chance to represent Australia at a Paralympic Games.
After 2000, athletes with an intellectual disability were banned from the Paralympic Games when the Spanish men’s basketball team was found to include athletes who did not have disabilities. Patrick is now the only remaining member of the Sydney 2000 swim team who still swims competitively.
13 gold at 2009 Global Games, 6 gold, 3 silver & 1 bronze at 2007 INAS-FID World Championships
Daughter of Australian swimming legend Steve Holland, Nerice Holland is also making waves in the pool.
Nerice, who has an intellectual disability, showed her talent in the pool from an early age, starting swimming at just six months. Encouraged to pursue her talents by her parents, at 19 Nerice won five gold, three silver and one bronze medal at the 2007 INAS-FID World Championships in Belgium.
Michael Milton, Cathy Freeman, Louise Sauvage, Dawn Fraser
Gold at 1999 FESPIC Games, 2 silver at 2002 Argentina World Championships, 2 bronze at Athens 2004, silver at Beijing 2008
Marayke Jonkers is the longest serving female in the Australian Paralympic swimming squad and is a role model to all those around her. She has held the world record for the 100m butterfly and has broken more than 60 Australian records in breaststroke, the individual medley, freestyle and butterfly.