Second day at the competition

Second day at the competition

The 2014 Special Olympics European Summer Games have been underway two days and the first medals have been earned and handed out. Read here our report and enjoy our highlights video and some pictures

Tim Shriver, Special Olympics chairman awarded the first gold medal of the tournament to Ekatarina Kraeva from Russia after she had won the 400 m freestyle swimming.  The Belgian Mieke De Mot ended third in the same discipline. This way, she was the first athlete to receive the first medal for Belgium from Ludo Van Campenhout, member of the Antwerp City Council and responsible for sports. Also in swimming for men, cycling and bocce, the first medals were given out. Meanwhile, the non sports activities such as het Young Athletes Program,  Unified Cooking , and the Special Olympics Scientific Symposium were in full swing today.

First Finals

The first final of a tournament is always something special. The Belgian female Special Olympics ambassador Mieke De Mot succeeded in seizing a medal for our country in the 400 meters freestyle swimming. The Russian Ekatarina Kraeva hit the finish first in front of Nathalie Moon from Great-Britain. Mieke De Mot took an honorary third place. Because in this final different categories of athletes swam together, Mieke got a gold medal in her category. “I am speechless”, said the medal winner. Also the Belgian men were starring: Peter Schram won gold in the 50 meters freestyle swimming. Emiel Van Hoof got silver.

More medals

The cycling riders competed already in the final over 15 kilometers as well. In the sports centre Balendijk in Lommel, Walter Scharlaeken won a silver medal in the first division for men. Kari Goovaerts got bronze in the second division for men and Gustave Theuns came over the finish third in the third divison. Wendy Engels did not end in the first three, but she gave the very best of herself.

In the afternoon, Princess Nora from Liechtenstein visited Balendijk to encourage the athletes and gave the starting shot for the time trial for female athletes over 5 kilometers. In the time trial final the Belgian riders won their first gold medals. Tom Vanhoof was the winner in the second division for men and Inge Verhaeghe duplicated this victory in the second division for female athletes. Christophe Cavens was the silver medal winner in the first division, and Gustaaf Teunis got bronze in the third division.

Medals were awarded by Princess Nora von Liechtenstein and Jasmine Vangrieken, council member responsible for sports in Lommel and spouse of the professional Belgian cyclist Johan Vansummeren.

All results , including the Bocce results (in this discipline, the first medals were awarded already today also) and the sports calendar are available here.

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