Rio 2016 Paralympics review

This year at the Paralympic Games the New Zealand team absolutely nailed it! In fact, we came 13th place overall – rather impressive for a country with such a small population!

Our incredible athletes did particularly well in the athletics and swimming events, making up for a whopping 19 out of our total 21 medals. Lets have a look at our medal winners…….

Sophie Pascoe, our very own swimming sensation, made history as the most successful New Zealand Paralympian ever. Sophie won gold medals in the women’s 100m backstroke, 100m butterfly and 200m individual medley, as well as silver medals in both the women’s 50m freestyle and 100m freestyle.

Nikita Howarth, New Zealand’s youngest ever Paralympian, also won multiple medals in the pool, scoring herself a gold medal in the women’s 200m individual medley and a bronze in the 50m butterfly.

Other successful New Zealand swimmers are Mary Fisher, who came first in the women’s 100m backstroke, Cameron Leslie, who earned gold in the men’s 150m individual medley, and Rebecca Dubber who won a bronze medal in the women’s 100m backstroke.

Now onto the athletic wins. Liam Malone, the dude on blades, came first in the men’s 200m sprint as well as the men’s 400m, and second in the 100m, earning him two golds and a silver medal.

William Stedman won multiple medals in running events too, coming third in both the men’s 400m and the men’s 800m.

Rory McSweeney also won a bronze medal in the men’s javelin throw.

Several of our female paralympians also had success in the athletic category. Anna Grimaldi won gold in the women’s long jump, Holly Robinson scored silver in the women’s javelin throw, and Jessica Hamill came in at third place in the women’s shot put event.

And lets not forget cycling duo Emma Foy and Laura Thompson who won silver in the women’s individual pursuit at the end of week one, and bronze in the women’s road race in week two.

What a fantastic couple of weeks we had at the Paralympic Games 2016 in Rio. The New Zealand team did an amazing job and managed to smash the target of 18 medals, winning 21 overall. Huge congratulations to all the athletes for their hard work and dedication, you have done our country proud!


New Zealand Women Olympic Gold Medalists

With the London 2012  Olympics happening now, we always hope that New Zealand can bring home a gold medal. According to Wikipedia, as of April 25,2012, New Zealand has so far won 55 Olympic gold medals! Six of the athletes who won the gold medals were women. They have been dubbed the golden girls and they are :

  • Yvette Williams– she is the first woman ever to win the gold medal for New Zealand. Her event was the Long Jump in the 1952 Helsinki Olympic Games.
  • Sarah Ulmer –was the first New Zealander to win an Olympic cycling gold. She also set world records at the 2004 Summer Olympics at Athens.
  • Barbara Kendall – is a boardsailor. She won a gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics  in Barcelona. She also went on to win a silver medal in 1996 Olympics Games in Atlanta, Georgia), and a bronze medal in 2000 in Sydney. She also finished 5th at the 2004 Games in Athens and sixth at the 2008 Games in China. She is the first, and as of 2008, only woman from New Zealand to compete at 5 Olympic Games!
  • Caroline Meyer (formerly known as Caroline Evers-Swindell)- her event is the double sculls along with her identical twin sister. She won with her sister,the double sculls gold medal in the 2004 Olympic games. At the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, she and her sister successfully defended their title and won gold medals in the women’s double sculls.
  • Georgina Earl (formerly known as Georgina Evers-Swindell) – She competed in the double sculls with her identical twin sister Caroline Meyer, and is a double Olympic gold medalist, having won at Athens in 2004 and Beijing in 2008.
  • Valerie Kasanita Adams (formerly known as Valerie Vili)- she is a shot putter and is the reigning women’s Olympic champion and three-time World champion, two-time Commonwealth and World Indoor champion.

 The library has a book about these awesome women Olympic gold medalists Golden Girls: celebrating New Zealand’s six female gold medalists. It is a young adult and adult non fiction but you might like to try check it out.