Australia at the 1992 Paralympic Games for Persons with Mental Handicap

Australia participated at the first and only Paralympic Games for Persons with Mental Handicap held in Madrid, Spain from 15–22 September 1992.[1] The Games followed the 1992 Summer Paralympics held in Barcelona, Spain.

Australia at the
1992 Paralympics Games for Persons with Mental Handicap
Flag of Australia.svg
NPCAustralian Paralympic Committee
Competitors51 in 4 sports
Ranked 1st
Summer appearances
Indigenous Australian athletes Alice Toogood and Donna Burns demonstrate throwing the boomerang at the 1992 Madrid Games

1600 athletes from 75 countries from competed in 5 sports – athletics, basketball, futsal, swimming and table tennis.[2] Australian Team comprised 51 athletes and 18 officials.[3] It competed in all sports except table tennis.

Australia finished first on the medal tally with 31 medals – 13 gold, 10 silver and 8 bronze medals.[2] Russell Torrance was the male team captain and Sarah-Jane Schulze was the women's team captain.[4]

Multiple medalists Joshua Hofer (left) with Joseph Walker (right) at the Madrid Games

Swimmer Joseph Walker won nine gold medals and newspaper reports likened his medal success to multiple Olympic gold medalist Mark Spitz.[5] Simmers Joshua Hofer and Rene Hardenbol won five gold medals.[4] Women's basketball team known as the Pearls won the gold medal.[4]

When the athletes from Madrid arrived home they were specifically invited and enjoyed the impressive public reception in Sydney. Marie Little described what this meant to those who were involved in the Madrid competition: I don’t think any participant will experience a similar feeling ever – the superb Fairstar dinner and the unbelievable Tickertape Parade were mind blowing – my heart was pumping, my eyes misty, my throat choked – in the crowd British Airways staff, bankers and paper sellers, little kids and their mums and dads, people in wheelchairs and bouncing babies – bands and music, sunshine and cheers. Little concluded: ‘Thanks to all for thanking the Paralympians’.[6]