Paralympics 2021 medal table: List of Yorkshire Paralympians who have struck gold, silver and bronze at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games

Over half of Yorkshire’s Paralympians competing at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games have won medals - read on to find out who they are.

Hannah Cockroft at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics. (Pic credit: Tim Goode / PA Wire)

It’s been a proud month for Great Britain, particularly for Yorkshire, as we have witnessed our local athletes succeed in the delayed Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

The international event taking place in Japan has hosted many games throughout the competition. With 40 Yorkshire participants in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, eight of them won medals for Team GB.

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For the Paralympics we have seen nine out of 17 Yorkshire athletes win medals for Team GB. With the event nearly coming to an end, let’s take a look at all the Yorkshire Paralympic athletes who won gold, silver and bronze medals.

Hannah Cockroft

The 29-year-old wheelchair racer, from Halifax, won gold on August 29 in the Women’s 100m T34 final race at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

She suffered two cardiac arrests shortly after she was born which resulted in permanent damage in various parts of her brain, which left her with weak hips, disfigured legs and feet and mobility issues which affected her fine motor skills in her hands. While she uses a wheelchair for long distances, she can walk short distances without a wheelchair.

Cockroft has held world records for the 100 metres, 200 metres, 400 metres, 800 metres and 1500 metres in her T34 classification.

This is not the first time she competed in the Paralympics, as she won two gold medals when she competed for Team GB at the 2012 Summer Paralympics and won a further three gold medals at the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio.

Kadeena Cox

At the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, the 30-year-old parasport sprinter and cyclist, from Leeds, won two gold medals in the Women’s 500m time trial C4-5 on August 27 and in the Mixed 750m team sprint C1-5 on August 28.

She starting sprinting from a young age before she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2015, a lifelong condition that impacts the brain and spinal cord.

She is no stranger to winning medals, as she won gold in her first major international competition at the IPC Athletics World Championships. She went on to win bronze in the 100m race at the 2016 IPC Athletics European Championships.

Sprinting isn’t her only talent and hobby, as she grew a passion for cycling and won gold in the T38 400m, silver in the 4x100m and bronze in the 100m at the Rio 2016 Summer Paralympic Games.

Chris Skelley

While the Paralympic judoka was born in Nottingham and raised in Swindon, he played rugby for Hull Ionians.

After he left school and got a job at a local garage, he noticed his eyesight deteriorating, when he went to the doctors he was diagnosed with ocular albinism.

Skelley’s passion for judo started when he was just five years old. He was already part of the England squad when his eyesight got worse.

He won three bronze medals at the under-20 national tournament between 2010 and 2013 and in 2014, he represented his country at the Scottish Open, taking away a gold medal in his division. He won silver the same year in the Welsh Senior Open.

Skelley went on to represent Great Britain at the IBSA European Judo Championship in December 2015 and in February 2016, he competed in the Summer Paralympic Games in Rio, winning a bronze medal.

More recently, Skelley won gold in the Men’s 100kg event at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games on August 29.

Laurence Whiteley

The 29-year-old athlete, from Northallerton, took gold for Team GB with his rowing partner, Lauren Rowles, in the Mixed PR2 double sculls event at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games on August 29.

He was passionate about sports from childhood and competed in various triathlons and was the British regional champion for the 13-14 age group.

But in 2006, he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a form of bone cancer, below his right knee. He was only given a 30 per cent chance of surviving the cancer. He underwent tumour surgery and 11 months of chemotherapy before he had to learn how to walk again through physiotherapy.

He initially began swimming, but then grew a passion for rowing and in 2015 found his rowing partner, Rowles, and they went on to win silver at their first major event, 2015 World Rowing Championships.

They also won gold in the final of the heats at the 2016 Summer Paralympic Games in Rio, where they set a world record.

Ellen Buttrick

The Leeds Rowing Club member, 26, was initially drawn to the sport when she saw people rowing at Roundhay Park near her home in Leeds.

However, at the beginning of her geography degree at Northumbria University, she was diagnosed with juvenile macular degeneration (JMD), a congenital eye disorder.

Eager to make a career out of her hobby, Buttrick earned her classification as PR3 athlete and soon after joined the GB para-rowing squad.

She became a World Champion in the PR3 Mixed Coxed Four and more recently won a gold medal in the Mixed Coxed Four event at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games on August 29.

Sue Bailey MBE

The para table tennis player, 48, from Sheffield, has competed in six Paralympic Games in her life (2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016 and 2020).

While she was tantalisingly close to winning her first Paralympic medal in the Rio 2016 Summer Paralympics, recently she took a medal home for the first time at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in the Women’s team class 4-5 semi-finals, where she won bronze on September 1.

Bailey began playing table tennis from the age of 12, but was diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome when she was 15 and she stopped playing. She also has fibromyalgia and chronic pain syndrome. However, she resumed playing at the age of 18 in a wheelchair.

She competed for England and won gold in singles at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.

In 2019, she was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) by the Queen for ‘services to Disabled and Able-Bodied Table Tennis and to Sport for Young People’. In the same year she was also awarded an honorary doctorate by Sheffield Hallam University.

Megan Shackleton

The 22-year-old para table tennis player, from Calderdale, competed in the same game as Sue Bailey (above) at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, where they took home a bronze medal for Team GB.

From a young age, Shackleton’s passion was heavily focussed on swimming and was keen to compete in the Olympics as a swimmer. However, when she was just nine years old, she fractured her spine in a machinery-related accident, leaving her in a wheelchair.

Determined to succeed, Shackleton started playing table tennis from the age of 12 at a Playground to Podium event in Leeds and has since won major medals at World and European level.

In 2019, she broke into the top 10 in her class for the first time. She currently lives in Sheffield and is studying English literature at the University of Sheffield.

Jamie Stead

The para-athlete, from Normanton, was part of the wheelchair rugby team that won gold at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in the Mixed Tournament event, along with fellow Yorkshire players Gavin Walker and Jack Smith.

Stead was born with cerebral palsy, a group of long-term conditions which affect the movement of your body and co-ordination.

This wasn’t the first time he competed in the Paralympics as he competed in the Rio 2016 Summer Paralympics where his team came in fifth place.

Stead played with teams that came in first place at the European Championship events in 2015 and 2017.

This was his first medal in the Paralympics.

Gavin Walker

The 37-year-old parasport athlete, from Rotherham, joined the fire service in 2003 but was involved in an accident that changed his life in 2010 when he slipped on wet decking. He suffered from a spinal injury as a result and he was introduced to wheelchair rugby during his rehabilitation.

In 2011 he went to his first training session. He was still working for the fire service until 2012. Then was selected for the national squad in 2013 and thus became a full-time athlete.

He made his Paralympic debut at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games, where his team came in fifth place.

His team came in first place at the European Championship events in 2015, 2017 and 2019.

He won his first gold medal at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games on August 29.