Canada’s Paralympics are nearly over, but one runner is ensuring the country does so in style.
Nate Riech of Victoria, B.C., has raced to a gold medal in his Paralympic debut.
The 26-year-old reigning world champion and world record holder ran to a time of three minutes 58.92 seconds in the men’s T38 1,500-metre final. The time set a new T38 Paralympic record in th distance.
Algeria’s Abdelkrim Krai was rewarded for his late push, capturing silver with a time of four minutes 03.07 seconds. Australia’s Deon Kenzie rounded out the podium after slipping to third, posting a time of four minutes 03.76 seconds.
WATCH | Nate Riech sets Paralympic record, runs to T38 1,500m gold:
Riech’s gold raises Canada’s medal count to 21 total, including now five gold medals.
Entering the Tokyo Paralympics, Riech continued to trim seconds off his world-record time in the 1,500 metres as recent as May 2021 with a time of three minutes 50.47 seconds at a meet in Azusa, Calif.
Fellow Canadian Liam Stanely, a T37 athlete — competing with a higher degree of impairment in comparison to athletes of T38 classification or higher — also participated in the race and finished fifth with a time of four minutes 06.95 seconds.
Despite missing the podium, the 21-year-old, who also hails from Victoria, set a Paralympic record for the T37 classification in the distance.
WATCH | Riech receives 1,500m gold medal: