Alice Tai MBE

August 5th, 2017

Following Alice’s trip to Buckingham Palace to pick up her MBE, we’ve been catching up with how she’s been doing over the last few months.

It seems hard to imagine that 12 months ago I was about to fly to Rio to represent GB in my first ever Paralympic Games. The whole experience was simply incredible – even more so to end the entire week of swimming on the podium listening to the National Anthem with my friends and team mates after clinching gold and a new world record in the medley relay. As a result of this success I was honoured to be awarded an MBE in February. Prior to this I was invited to a special reception at Buckingham Palace together with the other Olympic and Paralympic gold medallists. And, perhaps the most entertaining, I was invited to The Last Leg when Adam Hills unveiled his new gold prosthetic with the names of all the Paralympic gold medallists on. This really brought home how much the British public were behind the Games as when we were announced and entered the studio we received a deafening foot stamping and clapping standing ovation- it was really emotional.

Since Rio I havereturned to live and study in Manchester so I can access the elite facilities available.I share a flat with 2 other Paralympic swimmers – we essentially eat and sleep a lot! In April I was back in the pool for the first major competition since Rio.Aftera scheduled medical review my classification was changed from anS10 to an S9. Within 24 hours of this change taking place I set a new world record in the 100m Backstroke and am now currently ranked in the top 3 in the world for all of my main events.

July saw me return to the pool in Sheffield for trials for the Para swimming World Championships in Mexico this Autumn and the Commonwealth Games in Australia next April. I am delighted to say that my place on the team for Worlds has been confirmed and I also comfortably gained the qualification standards for Commonwealths, although the official team announcement for this won’t take place until the end of this year.

Its been an amazing 12 months and the next year looks equally as busy. I have 3 weeks off now to rest before training starts in earnest at the end of August for Worlds. I still cant quite believe that I have achieved and experienced so much at just 18! As always, its a team effort and the emotional and financial support are the key ingredients that allow success to take happen. Thank you for your continued support. Tokyo here I come!”

Congratulations Alice on your tremendous achievements so far, and we eagerly await news on yet more success in the near future. Good luck!