OU student Deborah Criddle won three medals - two individual silver and one team gold - in the dressage at the London 2012 Paralympics.
Deborah, who is studying for a BSc (Hons) in Natural Sciences, won silver in the Individual Dressage Championships Test – Grade III on her horse LJT Akilles, before taking the gold in the mixed team dressage alongside teammates Lee Pearson, Sophie Christiansen and Sophie Wells.
On winning her silver medal, Deborah - who very narrowly missed out on the individual gold – said: "He's (her horse) very sensitive and I didn't quite have the power in my right leg to get him back. There's more atmosphere out there today but that's what you've got to ride with.
“For the mistakes I made it was a pretty good score. I stopped moving my seat and he realised that. That happens and I'm pleased we got it back.”
Deborah is an extremely accomplished athlete who won an incredible three gold medals at the Athens Paralympic Games and two golds at the European Championships in 2011.
Martin Bean, Vice-Chancellor of the OU, said, “It has been a great summer for OU Olympians and Paralympians, and Deborah’s double really puts the icing on the cake. Her amazing achievement shows that flexible OU courses can be tailored to any individual – even allowing elite athletes to fit their studies around intense training schedules.”
With Deborah’s fantastic achievement, OU students have won seven medals in total at the London Games – three golds, one silver and three bronze.
A new sport-themed qualification has also launched this year, the BSc (Hons) Sport, Fitness & Coaching, which expands the existing Foundation Degree in Sport & Fitness to full honours.