Lee Pearson continued his dominance in Paralympic dressage by claiming a 12th gold medal with victory in the individual Grade II at Tokyo 2020.
The 47-year-old, with his horse Breezer, finished top of the leaderboard with a score of 76.265 ahead of Austria's Pepo Puch and ParalympicsGB team-mate Georgia Wilson, who claimed bronze at her first Games.
It was Pearson's first Paralympics with his new horse, following the death earlier this year of Gentleman, who he won titles with at London 2012 and Rio 2016. He had brought his new companion up from birth, representing a new challenge at his fifth Games.
Paralympics
'We are sick of being second best' - Weir demands authorities do more for para-sport
06/09/2021 AT 22:57
"I’m as emotional as the first. I’m probably more emotional, I don’t think I’ve cried immediately after a test before now," said Pearson on Channel 4, reflecting on his first gold at Sydney 2000.
"It’s an emotional rollercoaster, it’s difficult to stay at the top. People have presumed with my first four Paralympic Games that it was easy.
"To produce a homebred horse, to come here 10 years ago I saw him a day old in my parents’ field, Breezer, to produce a horse, to be here during these times and to win a gold is literally fairytale stuff
"I knew the moment I came to the 10 minute box, I could feel him tying up and getting tense because he knew this was his special day and a different day, I’m really proud of him.
I just feel so lucky that I’ve got horses in my life, they give me their legs. I’m rubbish at dancing in a nightclub, but bearable dancing in a dressage arena.
"I could never imagine a medal, one gold medal, an MBE, I didn’t understand it. I’m a lad, man, godfather and foster dad from Stoke-on-Trent, I didn’t know what the honours system meant.
"It’s a fairytale, it’s surreal. My life is surreal, I can’t think of another word to describe it."
Paralympics
ParalympicsGB finsh second in Tokyo medal table
05/09/2021 AT 09:01
Paralympics
Golds for Miller, Broom-Edwards, Wiggs as GB pass 100 medals
03/09/2021 AT 15:18