Nine Paralympic champions competing at swimming Euros

Some of the world’s best swimmers will line-up in Funchal, Portugal, from 30 April, hoping to secure gold medals and prepare for Rio 2016. 10 Apr 2016
Maksym Veraksa

Maksym Veraksa will try to repeat as the fastest Paralympic swimmer in the world at London 2012.

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The world’s fastest Paralympian, Veraksa holds the world record in the men’s 50m freestyle S12.

As the 2016 IPC Swimming European Open Championships edge closer, some of the world’s best swimmers are putting the finishing touches to their preparations.

For this edition of the Euros, fans will also be treated to seeing swimmers from outside the region compete for honours in Funchal, Portugal from 30 April – 7 May.

Here are a selection of the best athletes you should look out for.

Ihar Boki, Belarus

The visually impaired swimmer stormed onto the scene at London 2012, winning five gold medals in men’s S13 events. He has since gone unbeaten in all but two World Championships finals across two editions, and holds multiple world records and two European titles.

Andre Brasil, Brazil

Brazil’s reigning triple Paralympic champion is taking every opportunity to compete at the highest level ahead of the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. The S10 athlete showed that he is still one of the best at the 2015 Worlds, leaving with three titles to bring his career total to 15 in a decade.

Daniel Dias, Brazil

Brazil’s most polific Paralympian is gearing up for the performance of his life come September. As the reigning Paralympic champion in no less than six events, the S5 swimmer will be in Funchal as part of the preparations for his home Paralympics at Rio 2016.

Marc Evers, the Netherlands

Dutch favourite Evers will resume his bid to beat newcomer Viacheslav Emeliantsev, after the Russian claimed his 100m backstroke S14 world title in 2015. Evers is also the European and Paralympic title holder in the event.

Teresa Perales, Spain

In her favourite event, the 100m freestyle S5, Perales has dominated since Athens 2004 where she picked up her first Paralympic gold.

The Spaniard, who is one of her country's most well-known and loved sportspeople, is also the European champion having returned to the pool in 2014 following a serious illness.

Sarah Louise Rung, Norway

A main rival to Perales, Rung continues to be one of Norway's brightest medal hopes. The 200m freestyle and 50m butterfly S5 Paralympic champion will also defend four European titles in Funchal.

Maksim Veraksa, Ukraine

The world’s fastest Paralympian, Veraksa holds the world record in the men’s 50m freestyle S12. He will also defend European golds in the sprint and 100m freestyle S12 in Funchal, on his way to Rio where he will try to retain his three Paralympic golds.

Dmytro Vynohradets, Ukraine

The S3 swimmer has experienced somewhat of a resurgence in recent years, since winning double gold at the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games but failing to finish on top of the podium at London 2012.

At the last two World Championships he has picked up an incredible 11 titles, and in 2014 collected seven European golds proving he is back at the top of his game.

Oleysa Vladykina, Russia

The 100m breaststroke SB8 Paralympic, world and European champion since her world record breaking debut in 2008, Vladykina is still going strong.

However Great Britain’s Stephanie Slater is hot on her heels as the five-time European champion from 2014. Keen to make-up for lost time having missed out on the Worlds due to injury, Slater will also make her Paralympic debut in Rio.

More than 450 swimmers from 50 countries will compete at the 2016 IPC Swimming European Open Championships.

Free tickets for both heats and finals are available at, alongside live coverage and results from each day.