Sport: Wheelchair racing
Born: 5 June 1979
Gold medals in Beijing Olympics: 800m, 1500m
Classification: T(Track) 54
David Weir can’t walk or run - but he can fly. He has broken every British track record up to 5,000m. He’s also broken every road record: the 10,000m, the half marathon and the full Marathon. He’s won the London Marathon five times. And this in a sport where, before Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson, athletes specialised in short, medium or long distances - not broke records in all of them! In fact, if it hadn’t been for Tanni, David would never have become a legend.
It’s been a long journey. He was born without the use of his legs. At first he swam and played basketball. He wanted to be a boxer, like his brothers. Then he began wheelchair racing. He was a natural. He went to his first Paralympics in 1996 when he was only 17. He was thrilled - but he was also a teenager. He wanted to drink and party with his friends. He didn’t want to work hard. So he didn’t go to the next Paralympics in 2000 - but he watched them.
He saw Tanni Grey-Thompson win medal after medal in wheelchair racing. He remembers: "I just sat there crying. I said to myself: I’ve got to do this. I had no qualifications, nothing. Wheelchair racing was the only thing I was any good at."
And so his journey began. In the 2004 Games he won a silver and a bronze. In 2008, in Beijing, he won two golds, a silver and a bronze. He was hoping to race the marathon, too - but dropped it because he was exhausted.
And now he’s focused on the London 2012 Paralympic Games. He wants four gold medals this time, not just two. He will defend his 800m and 1500m titles - and hopes to race the 5,000m and the Marathon too. But will he drop the Marathon again? Will he be able to win every race?
"It’s going to be tough to get four gold medals," he says.
Maybe the answer is in his tattoo. He’s got a special one on his chest. It’s a Japanese symbol. It means ‘winner’ - and that’s just what he’s aiming to be in London 2012!