Josef Craig

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Josef Craig
Personal information
Born (1997-02-17) 17 February 1997 (age 17)
Hebburn, England
Sport Swimming
Club South Tyneside SC
Coach Paul Robinson

Josef Isaac Craig, MBE (born on 17 February 1997) is a British Paralympic swimmer. Craig competes in S7 events and qualified for the 2012 Summer Paralympics, winning the gold in a world record time in the men's 400 m freestyle event.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Craig was born in Hebburn, Tyne and Wear on 17 February 1997.[2] Craig, who has cerebral palsy, was introduced to disability swimming at the age of nine, before entering competitive swimming a few years later.[3] Noted as a swimming talent from a young age, and ear-marked for the Great Britain team at the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, Craig's career suffered a setback when he was diagnosed with Graves' disease in 2011.[2] The condition, which affects the thyroid gland, caused severe weight loss in Craig, but after having his thyroid removed he quickly returned to swimming.[2] He is a supporter of Newcastle United FC.[4][5]

Career history[edit]

Craig trains at the South Tyneside Swimming Club.[6] In 2012 he set five personal bests at the Paralympic trials for the 2012 Games in London and then won his first British medal with a bronze in the 100 m freestyle at the 2012 British Swimming Championships.[2] Later that year, at the British International Disability Championships, he improved again on his personal best to take the youth 100 m freestyle title. In the same tournament, Craig took the gold in the men's youth 50 m, with a time of 29.95s, and the bronze in the men's open 400 m challenge.[7] In the finals that afternoon he recorded a time of 4:42.81 to beat his own world record set earlier that day, and saw him finish first to collect the gold; his first Paralympic medal, making him Great Britain's youngest 2012 gold medal winner.[8] To commemorate his gold medal Royal Mail painted a post box gold in his hometown of Jarrow, Tyne and Wear, and produced a first class stamp featuring a picture of him.[9] As a result of his success he was jointly awarded the North East Sports Personality of the Year award, along with Olympian rower Kat Copeland in December 2012.[10] Then, on 16 December, Craig was made Young Sports Personality of the year for 2012 at the BBC's main annual award.[11]

Craig was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2013 New Year Honours for services to swimming.[12][13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Paralympics 2012: Josef Craig claims 400m gold in record time". Retrieved 6 September 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Meet the Team - Josef Craig". Retrieved 6 September 2012. 
  3. ^ "Josef Craig". 15 August 2012. Retrieved 6 September 2012. 
  4. ^ Nightingale, Lisa (29 September 2012). "Top treat for golden boy Josef". Retrieved 29 July 2014. 
  5. ^ Scanlon, Rob. "Josef Casts A Golden Eye". Retrieved 29 July 2014. 
  6. ^ "Josef Craig". British Paralympic Association. Retrieved 7 September 2012. 
  7. ^ Cunningham, Sam (6 September 2012). "He's done it again! Craig smashes own world record to earn gold in S7 400m final". Mail Online. Retrieved 7 September 2012. 
  8. ^ Pearce, Nick (6 September 2012). "Paralympics 2012: Josef Craig wins gold for Great Britain in 400m freestyle and breaks his own world record". The Telegraph. Retrieved 7 September 2012. 
  9. ^ "Josef Craig celebrated with gold Jarrow postbox". BBC News. 8 September 2012. Retrieved 9 September 2012. 
  10. ^ "Kat Copeland and Josef Craig share North East award". BBC Sport. 7 December 2012. Retrieved 19 December 2012. 
  11. ^ "Josef Craig wins BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year". BBC Sport. 16 December 2012. Retrieved 19 December 2012. 
  12. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 60367. p. 24. 29 December 2012.
  13. ^ "Members of the Order of the British Empire". Retrieved 29 July 2014.