David Brown - Rio 2016

David Brown


Brown, together with guide Jerome Avery, enjoyed mixed fortunes at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. The pair won 100m T11 gold but failed to make the finals of the 200m and 400m.

In the 100m, Brown clocked 10.99 seconds to smash the Paralympic record and win his first Paralympic title ahead of Brazil’s Felipe Gomes.

Brown originally showed he had the potential to become a Paralympic champion in 2014, setting new world records in the 100m and 200m T11 events.

Coached by Brazilian middle distance legend Joaquim Cruz, Brown became the first man in his class to go under 11 seconds when he ran 10.92 seconds at a meeting that April 2014 in California, USA. On the same day he also smashed the 200m record, finishing in 22.41.

That impressive form continued in 2015 as he won double gold at the Parapan Games in August, beating the likes of Brazil’s Lucas Prado and Felipe Gomes to gold in both the 100m and 200m T11.

The American then headed to the 2015 World Championships in Doha, Qatar, as the favourite for sprint gold once again – and sure enough he opened his campaign with gold over 100m. Victory in the 200m did not go his way as Gomes took the top spot, with Namibia’s Ananias Shikongo claiming silver and another Brazilian, Daniel Silva, finishing third – leaving the American out of the medals.

Brown failed to make it past the 100m and 200m semi-finals at London 2012 but will be hoping for better fortunes at the London 2017 World Para Athletics Championships.


Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Vision impairment
Origin of Impairment
T11, F11
Jerome Avery

Further personal information

Chula Vista, CA, USA
Higher education
Massage Therapy - Healing Hands School of Holistic Health: Escondido, CA, USA

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He began running at age five. His first competition was at the 2006 Colorado State Games in the United States of America.
Why this sport?
"In my first 50-yard dash I got second. I thought to myself, 'Hey I'm pretty fast'. When my vision started fluctuating, sprinting was a great way to stay competitive against my friends, so I had a need for speed."
Name of coach
Joaquim Cruz [personal], BRA, from 2012
Training Regime
He trains at the US Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, CA, United States of America.

International debut

Competing for
United States
Parapan American Games
Guadalajara, MEX

General interest

DowntownDavidBrown [given to him by one of the nurses who treated him while his eyes were being operated on]. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Playing the piano, riding roller coasters, spending time with friends and family. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Memorable sporting achievement
Competing at the 2012 Paralympic Games in London. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Most influential person in career
His grandfather. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Hero / Idol
His grandfather. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
He had a muscle strain during the 2017 season. (, 20 May 2019)

He sustained an injury while competing in the T11 200m at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The problem also affected his performance in the T11 400m race later in the Games. (, 22 Jan 2017)

In 2013 a hamstring injury kept him out of action for three weeks. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Superstitions / Rituals / Beliefs
"I always put my hands on my blocks before I get in them." (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"I am just another person who is trying to be something greater than what I am." (Facebook page, 17 Sep 2019)
Awards and honours
He was flag bearer for the United States of America at the opening ceremony of the 2015 World Championships in Doha, Qatar. (, 16 Oct 2015)

He was named in the 2011 US Paralympics Track and Field High School All-American team. (, 15 Sep 2011)

In 2011 he received the Rosemary Zander Award from the Special School District [SSD] in Hazelwood, MO, United States of America. The honour is presented for outstanding student achievement. (, 30 Apr 2011)
To compete at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (, 20 May 2019)
At age 15 months he was diagnosed with Kawasaki disease, a condition that causes swelling in the lymph nodes. It affected his eyes and resulted in glaucoma. Following several eye operations, he was told at age 13 that his vision could not be saved. "I remember me being able to see one moment and then completely nothing the next. I was frustrated, confused, and angry. I was in complete denial." (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019;, 22 Jan 2017;, 19 Apr 2015)
Other information
Ahead of the 2019 season he began training for long jump, and also returned to 400m training. His guide for the 400m is Connor Faint. "I always wanted to get back to running the 400m. Now I have a new guide for that distance, Connor Faint. With Jerome [Avery, his guide for the 100m] I run on the outside, but I'm on the inside of Connor. Balancing that out was tough at first, but the more you do it the easier it gets. [The long jump] is scary because I know I have to go straight, then it's like, cool, I'm running by myself! With nobody attached!" (, 20 May 2019)


Unit Date Rank
London 2012 Paralympic Games (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 200 m T11 Heat 2 2012-09-03 2
Men's 200 m T11 Heat 1 2012-09-04 3
Men's 4x100 m T11-13 Heat 1 2012-09-05 9999
Men's 100 m T11 Heat 1 2012-09-07 3
Men's 100 m T11 Heat 3 2012-09-07 2
IPC Athletics World Championships (Lyon, France)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 200 m T11 Semifinal 2 2013-07-20 3
Men's 200 m T11 Heat 3 2013-07-20 5
Men's 200 m T11 Final 1 2013-07-21 4
Men's 4x100 m T11-13 Semifinal 2 2013-07-22 2
Men's 4x100 m T11-13 Final 1 2013-07-23 2
Men's 400 m T11 Semifinal 1 2013-07-26 2
Men's 400 m T11 Final 1 2013-07-27 2
IPC Athletics 2015 World Championships (Doha, Qatar)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T11 Heat 1 2015-10-22 1
Men's 100 m T11 Semifinal 3 2015-10-22 1
Men's 100 m T11 Final 1 2015-10-23 1
Men's 200 m T11 Heat 4 2015-10-28 1
Men's 200 m T11 Semifinal 1 2015-10-29 1
Men's 200 m T11 Final 1 2015-10-29 4
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T11 Heat 2 2016-09-10 1
Men's 100 m T11 Heat 5 2016-09-10 1
Men's 100 m T11 Final Round 2016-09-11 1
Men's 200 m T11 Heat 3 2016-09-13 1
Men's 200 m T11 Heat 2 2016-09-14 3
Men's 400 m T11 Heat 1 2016-09-16 3
World Para Athletics Championships London 2017 (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T11 Final 1 2017-07-15 1
Men's 100 m T11 Heat 3 2017-07-15 1
Men's 200 m T11 Heat 2 2017-07-20 2
Men's 200 m T11 Final 1 2017-07-21 2
Men's 4x100 m T11-13 Final 1 2017-07-23 9999