Sports Minister Paul Givan, MLA has welcomed swimmer Bethany Firth back to Northern Ireland after her historic performance in Rio.
Bethany Firth topped the medal table in Rio, with three golds and one silver, becoming Team GB’s most successful medal winner.
Speaking at Belfast City Airport, the Minister said: “I am delighted to welcome Bethany home. What a fantastic achievement this is. To come home from Rio with four medals, three of which are gold, is just phenomenal and it proves once again that Northern Ireland’s home bred athletes are amongst the best in the world.
“As Minister responsible for sport, I greatly value the vital role that sport plays in contributing to peoples’ health and well being. I fully believe that people of all abilities can benefit from sport.
“Bethany is a fine role model for other young people who wish to become involved in competitive swimming. Bethany actively demonstrates what can be achieved with dedication and training, and is a genuine encouragement to countless other people.
“Bethany has had amazing support from all close to her and I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to the many people behind the scenes that have helped her along the way. These people include her coaches, Sports Institute NI, Disability Sport NI, Ards Swimming Club, Swim Ulster, her lecturers and fellow students at SERC and finally her family and friends.”
Notes to editors:
- Bethany began her haul of Rio medals by retaining her 100m backstroke title and then she won the 200m freestyle, silver in the 100m breaststroke followed by gold in the 200m individual medley triumph
- Bethany is a student at the South Eastern Regional College
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