HISTORIC! Sir Lee Pearson Wins Eighth Equestrian Championship At The Tokyo Paralympics 2020

Published 08/26/2021, 11:41 AM EDT


Lee Pearson, the Paralympian sweeps his 18th individual title at the Tokyo Paralympics. Winning gold on the very first day of equestrian sports is indeed a huge achievement for the British legend.

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The 41-year-old British para-athlete developed an interest in the sport while watching matches, at the age of 18. Ever since he started competing in the Paralympics, he’s been a superstar. In 2000, he won three titles at the Sydney Paralympics. In 2003, he became the only disabled person to win an award at the British Dressage National Championship. Not only was he successful at competing, but he also created a world record in the equestrian sport. Moreover, the world record set by him has not been broken since the last 3 consecutive Paralympic Games.

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Pearson Lee (GBR) – Gentleman
Team Test – Grade Ib – Dressage
London 2012 Paralympic Games
© Hippo Foto – Jon Stroud

Lee’s performance at Tokyo

The para-dressage legend gave a remarkable performance in Tokyo, winning the 12th Paralympic gold medal in his career. Even though the grand total of his medal tally adds up to 18 medals now, it’s incredible to see his reaction towards this glorious feat. Post his victory, he said, “I’m very happy; I cried at my second halt at X in the arena. It’s been a long journey, and Breezer is a home-bred horse. This is even more special because he’s very sensitive to environments, and at Hartpury I did not complete because of something in the environment there. So that added to the emotion”. 

Pearson has most certainly has had an incredible journey in his career. However, his competitors have also overcome certain milestones in their sporting careers and thus deserve equal appreciation.

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Pearson’s competition

Lee’s home-bred 10-year-old gelding Breezer has always acted as a catalyst in his performances since Sydney Paralympics, 2000. During this competition, he successfully scored 76.26%. Interestingly, this was just 3% ahead of his competitor who finished second. The Aussie, Austria’s Pepo Puch, clinched the silver medal, riding Sailor’s Blue. He had the same ride in the World Equestrian Games in 2008 as well as in the 2019 European Championship.

The bronze medallist, Britain’s Georgia Wilson, rid the 7-year-old Supertramp mare Sakura. Making his first appearance in the Paralympic Games, he achieved an excellent score of 72.76% with a wonderful test.

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The competition has most certainly been an emotional roller-coaster for most para-athletes. But, this is just the beginning, there is more to come.

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Divya Chaturvedi

95 articles

Divya Chaturvedi is an Olympic Athletics author at EssentiallySports, currently pursuing her Under Graduate degree in Psychology from the University of Delhi. She's also an internationally recognized athlete, specializing in Shot Put and Discus, representing India at the International Children's Games held in Australia has been one of the biggest feats in her endeavor so far. Having participated in The Road to Wimbledon and representing the state several times, she bagged a number of titles for the same.

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