Ireland's Michael McKillop announces retirement

Four-time Paralympic gold medallist and multi Para athletics champion made his final appearance in an emotional men's 1500m final in Tokyo 26 Nov 2021
A man with the uniform of Ireland showing his gold medal and a mascot
Ireland's Michael McKillop celebrating his gold medal in the men's 1500m T37 at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games
ⒸAlexandre Loureiro/Getty Images
By World Para Athletics and Paralympics Ireland

Ireland's four-time Paralympic champion Michael McKillop announced his retirement from Para sport. The announcement comes shortly after competing at his fourth Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

McKillop's career started in 2006 when he announced himself as a great talent at the World Championships in Assen, the Netherlands with a gold medal in the 800m T37.

This was to be the first of many medals that were to come his way as he would go on to win a further five World Championships titles, double gold at the 2014 European Championships and four Paralympic Gold medals: 800m gold in Beijing 2008, 800m and 1500m in London 2012 and gold in the 1500m at the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The Lyon 2017 World Championships, at which McKillop took the gold, were to prove to be his last major competition for 2 years as he underwent essential surgery.

However, the Irish showed incredible determination to return from the injury in time for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games where he was to make his final appearance for his country in an incredibly emotional 1500m race.

McKillop leaves Para athletics as one of the greatest and most successful Irish Paralympic athletes of all time.

Speaking about the retirement of Michael McKillop Paralympics Ireland CEO, Miriam Malone said:

“Michael McKillop will forever be remembered as one of the greatest athletes of all time on the track and a true trailblazer for Paralympic sport off the track. Michael’s stature in Paralympic sport was perfectly illustrated by the reaction of his fellow athletes at the finish line of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. Everyone involved with Paralympic Sport would like to thank Michael for what he has done for Paralympic sport, we would like to congratulate him on an incredible career and wish him all of the best in the future."

You can find more information about Michael McKillop's career here.