Tokyo 2020: Top 10 Para swimming moments

Legends, newcomers and first-time gold medallists make it to the list voted by fans on World Para Swimming social media channels 28 Sep 2021
A Para swimmer posing with four medals and smiling to the camera
Sophie Pascoe became New Zealand's most decorated Paralympian following her four medals at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre
ⒸAlex Pantling/Getty Images
By World Para Swimming

In week-long voting, Para swimming fans had the chance to pick their top 10 best moments of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

Less than a month after a showdown in the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, here are the official results:

Keiichi Kimura, Japan

The 31-year-old Japanese Para swimmer ended the Paralympic Games with an emotional gold medal for the host neation, his first in the fourth Paralympic appearance. After a bronze in London 2012 and a silver in Rio 2016, Kimura finally won gold in the men’s 100m backstroke S11 and broke down in tears during the national anthem.

Gabriel dos Santos, Brazil

The Brazilian sensation won two golds and one silver in his Paralympic debut. Araujo, who started practicing Para swimming because of iconic compatriot Daniel Dias, touched the wall first in the men’s 50m backstroke S2 and 200m freestyle S2.

“These medals are a culmination of my hard work together with my coach. I feel so happy about these medals,” said Araujo after clinching his second gold on the penultimate day of competition at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre.

Ihar Boki, Belarus

The vision-impaired swimmer left Tokyo with five gold medals out of the six events in which he participated. Boki broke one world and Paralympic record on his way to glory at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre. The Belarusian Para swimmer now has 16 Paralympic gold medals to his name together with one silver and a bronze.

Simone Barlaam, Italy

The 21-year-old Italian prodigy Simone Barlaam had a golden Paralympic debut in Japan The seven-time world champion triumphed in the men’s 50m freestyle S9 adding two silvers and one bronze to his successful Tokyo appearance.

Evan Austin, USA

Third luck was a charm for USA’s Para swimmer Evan Austin as he finally got the taste of winning a medal at his third Paralympic Games following London 2012 and Rio 2016. After becoming a world champion in the men’s butterfly S7 two years ago in London, Austin proved to be a dominant force in the event winning Paralympic gold. He added bronze in the men’s 400m freestyle S7 to his successful haul.

Anastasia Pagonis, USA

USA’s young star Anastasia Pagonis had a dream Paralympic debut in Tokyo winning a gold and a bronze. She triumphed in the women’s 400m freestyle S11 on the second competition day setting a new world record. The 17-year-old Pagonis instantly made the Paralympic headlines, not only with her Para swimming success but also with her positive spirit.

Sophie Pascoe, New Zealand

New Zealand’s legend Sophie Pascoe won two golds and four medals overall at her fourth Paralympic Games. Pascoe became the Paralympic champion in Tokyo in the women’s 100m freestyle S9 and 200m individual medley SM9 making it 11 Paralympic golds over the course of four Paralympic Games. With that achievement, the 28-year-old became her country's most decorated Paralympian.

Jessica Long, USA

The unstoppable Jessica Long bagged six medals in Tokyo including three golds. Participating at the Paralympics since Athens 2004, the 29-year-old Long has now 29 Paralympic podiums, including 16 victories. The double-amputee took the final medal in Tokyo on the last day of competition winning gold in the women’s 100m butterfly S8. It was her fourth Paralympic medal in the event.

Aurelie Rivard, Canada

The 25-year-old Canadian superstar Aurelie Rivard successfully defended her 100m and 400m freestyle S10 titles from Rio 2016 in the Tokyo Aquatics Centre. Rivard triumphed in both events setting new world records in what was her third Paralympic Games. Rivard added one silver and two bronze medals to her tally in Japan.

Maisie Summers - Newton, Great Britain

The British sensation took two gold medals in her Paralympic debut. Summers-Newton made a lifetime memory in the women’s 200m individual medley SM6 and 100m breaststroke SB6 setting a world and Paralympic record on her way to two victories in Tokyo. At only 19 years of age, there is still a lot to come for Summers-Newton in Para swimming.

Complete results from Para swimming in Tokyo can be found here.