2015 Swammy Awards: Ihar Boki, Male Para-Swimmer of the Year

Check out all of our 2015 Swammy Awards here.

2015 Male Para-Swimmer of the Year: Ihar Boki, Belarus

In a year where the sport’s female stars are leading the way toward the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games, Belarusian swimmer Ihar Boki stood out among the men as the 21-year old’s star continued to rise in 2015.

At the World Championships, Boki won 6 gold medals and 1 silver across a massive schedule that was bigger than any he’d attempted before. The gold tally was one more than the 5 he won at both the 2012 Paralympics and at the 2013 World Championships.

The new gold medal for him came in the 50 free: an event in which Boki had earned only Paralympic silver previously. That medal went with wins in the 100 IM, 200 IM, 100 free, 400 free, and 100 fly at the World Championships.

Included in-and-among the gold medals were 4 new World Records (he holds 7 altogether, all of them in long course) in the S13 category: 50 free (23.20), 100 free (50.85), 100 back (56.74), and 100 fly (54.44).

Boki was Belarus’ fastest 200 and 400 meter freestyler in 2015, regardless of impairment or not, and if the country were to qualify a 400 free or medley relay for the 2016 Olympics, Boki would have a chance at qualifying as part of that relay team. The country’s relays finished 18th and 15th, respectively, at last year’s World Championships; 16 countries qualify to compete in each relay at the Olympic Games.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Brazilian Daniel Dias once again dominated the S5 and SB4 classes, winning 7 gold medals and a silver at the World Championships and 8 gold medals at the Parapan American Games in Toronto. His Worlds run included championship records in the 50 back and 100 free, as well as swimming the second leg on a World Record breaking mixed 200 free relay for Brazil. All 7 of his World titles came in events that will be raced at the Paralympic Games next year.
  • Dias’ teammate Andre Brasil won 3 golds and two silvers in the S10 classification at the 2015 World Championships, and added to it 6 Parapan American Games victories.
  • Alexander Skaliukh from Russia went 4-for-5 in his events at the World Championships, winning gold medals in the 50 free, 100 free, and 100 fly in the S9 category, as well as a relay gold on Russia’s 34-point 400 free relay.

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TA

My vote is for Dias. I have trouble calling someone who swims as fast as Boki a “disabled swimmer”.

Da Bears

Boki definently deserves it. I think that Denis Tarasov from. Russia deserves it over Skaliukh. He was faster than Skaliukh even though he is an S8 and not an S9. I question Tarasov being an 8 but I deeply respect his accomplishments.

Braden, will there be an up and coming swimmer of the year like last year?

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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