Paralympic swimmer, Sophie Pascoe, first made a name for herself at the 2008 Paralympics in Beijing, winning three gold medals in the 100m breaststroke, 100m backstroke and 200m IM medley, plus silver in the 100m butterfly. At the 2012 Summer Paralympics in London, Sophie competed in six events – the four in which she won medals at the 2008 Paralympics, plus the 50m freestyle and 100m freestyle events. Sophie won three gold medals in the 200m IM medley, 100m butterfly and 100m freestyle, she also won three silver medals. At the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, Sophie competed in five events, dropping the 100 m breaststroke SB9. She won gold medals in the 100m backstroke, 100m butterfly and 200m individual medley, the latter in world record time. She also won silver medals in the 50m freestyle and 100m freestyle. Her success took her gold medal count to nine and her total medal count to 15, to become New Zealand's most successful Paralympian.
Sophie won the 2016 Halberg Sport New Zealand Leadership Award. She also won the Halberg Disability Sport Foundation Disabled Sportsperson of the Year in 2011, 2012, 2013 & 2015
Sophie has never dwelled on her disability, caused by an accident when she was two which led to the loss of one of her legs below the knee. She explains it as the best thing that ever happened to her and something which fate brought her. Sophie started swimming at the age of 8 and at the age of ten told her grandfather before he passed away she had a dream to make it to the Paralympics. Sophie’s dream came true when, at only 15, she became the youngest ever New Zealander to win a medal at the Paralympics.
Sophie makes no secret of the fact she wants to see greater recognition of paralympic sports and she believes one way to achieve this is through high profile sponsorship. “I see the partnership with Beef + Lamb New Zealand Inc as a great demonstration of support for myself and paralympic sports at a time when competitors are striving for equal recognition,” she says.
Beef + Lamb is proud to support such an inspirational and talented young woman.