Games of the XII Paralympics
17 - 28 September 2004
On 17 September 2004, the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games began with a colourful and spectacular Opening Ceremony, marking the beginning of unique Games and bringing together the world’s best athletes with a disability. Seventy-three of the 135 competing nations won at least one medal during these Paralympic Games – several of these countries secured their first medal in Paralympic Games history. For 17 countries, these were their first Paralympics ever.
During Games time, the Paralympic Village was home to 3,806 athletes, around 2,200 NPC team officials and 1,000 Games officials. A total of 1,160 women (31% of the total number of athletes) competed at the Games, with female athletes competing in Judo and Volleyball (Sitting) for the first time.
Excellent sporting performances in 19 sports resulted in 304 world records and 448 Paralympic records. China took the top spot in the final medal tally for the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games. The 2008 Paralympic Games host won 141 medals in total, 63 of which were gold. Great Britain finished second overall capturing 35 gold medals followed by Canada with 28 gold. One of the most outstanding athletes at the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games was Japanese Mayumi Narita (Swimming) with seven gold and one bronze medal. Canadian wheelchair athlete Chantal Peticlerc crowned her career by winning five gold medals in the 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m and 1,500m races setting three world records.
A total of 3,103 media representatives including more than 68 broadcasters were present in Athens to cover the Games. A total of 617 hours broadcast in 25 countries and Pan Europe from the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games were watched by a record number of viewers all over the world confirming the growth in media interest for the Paralympic Games since Sydney 2000.
Around 850,000 tickets were sold, far surpassing the original expectations (400,000 tickets) of the Athens 2004 Organising Committee. The Athens 2004 Paralympic Games were supported by 8,863 volunteers who were handpicked from some 160,000 personal applications.
Games Facts & Figures
- 3,806 athletes (2646 men, 1169 women)
- 8,863 volunteers handpicked from 160,000 applications
- 304 world records and 448 Paralympic records in 19 sports
- 850,000 tickets sold
- 3,103 media
- 705 torchbearers
- Unveiling of the new IPC logo