Marayke Jonkers

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Marayke Jonkers
121202 - Marayke Jonkers with world champs silver medal - 3b - digital image.jpg
Marayke Jonkers with her silver medal from the SM4 150 m individual medley at the 2002 IPC World Swimming Championships in Mar del Plata, Argentina
Personal information
Nationality  Australia
Born (1981-09-13) 13 September 1981 (age 35)

Marayke Caroline Jonkers (born 13 September 1981) is a retired Australian Paralympic swimmer and paratriathlete. She won two bronze medals at the 2004 Athens Paralympics and a silver medal at the 2008 Beijing Paralympics, along with a bronze medal at the 2010 Budapest ITU Triathlon World Championships.


Jonkers was born on 13 September 1981 in Hobart,[1] and moved to Queensland as a baby.[2] She lives in the Sunshine Coast of Queensland.[3] She became a paraplegic due to a car accident at the age of eight months.[3] She studied Communications and Social Science at the University of the Sunshine Coast where she received two bachelor's degrees.[4][5][6] She works as a motivational speaker.[4][6] In 2009, she became a graduate employment consultant for STEPS Disability Qld.[5]

As part of her university studies, she completed an internship with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation working in ABC Online and the Stateline television show.[6] She has had stories published in The Sunshine Coast Daily and The Weekender.[6] She answered fashion questions in the April 2008 edition of Link Magazine.[7]

Sporting career[edit]

In swimming, Jonkers competed in the SB3 classification, which means she has a more severe physical disability than those in classifications of 4 to 6.[8] She has also swum in the SM4 classification.[9] She represents the Maroochydore Swimming Club at national competitions.[10] Jonkers broke more than 70 Australian national swimming records in the breaststroke, individual medley, freestyle and butterfly.[4][11] She also set a world record for the 100 m butterfly event.[11]

Jonkers' began representing her state of Queensland at the age of twelve, and first represented Australia in 1999, winning a gold medal in that year's FESPIC Games.[12] Her first Paralympics was the 2000 Sydney Games, where she placed fourth and sixth.[11][13][14] At the 2002 IPC Swimming World Championships, she won two swimming silver medals.[11] At the 2004 Athens Paralympics, Jonkers won two swimming bronze medals in the Women's 150 m Individual Medley SM4 and Women's 50 m Breaststroke SB3 events.[11][13] She competed at the 2008 Beijing Paralympics, where she was one of Australia's oldest swimmers.[9] She won a silver medal at the Games in the Women's 150 m Individual Medley SM4 event[5][13] with a time of 3:28.88.[9] In 2009, she set a world record in the 150 m individual medley at Australia's national short course championships held in Hobart.[5] In 2010, she competed at the Queensland Swimming Age Multi Class Championships.[8] She competed in the women's 100 m Breaststroke event, finishing third with a time of 02:50.59.[8] In 2010, at the age of 30, she also competed at the 2010 Telstra Australian Championships[10] the Over 12 years 150 m Medley event where she made the final finished with a time of 4:07.51.[10] She also made the finals in the Over 12 years 50 m Breaststroke event.[10] She was the Australian flag-bearer for the 2010 IPC Swimming World Championships in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, where she won a bronze medal in the 50 m breaststroke SB3 and was part of the 20-point 4×50 m relay team that broke an Oceania record.[14][15]

Jonkers' first paratriathlon competition was as social event related to the 2009 ITU Triathlon World Championships in the Gold Coast. She became Australia's first female paratriathlete and paratriathlon medallist when she competed in the 2010 championships in Budapest, winning a bronze medal in the TRI-1 classification in a time of 2:12:40, eleven minutes better than her previous personal best.[3][14][16][17] She had an Australian Institute of Sport Paralympic swimming scholarship.[18]

On 9 December 2011, she announced her retirement from competitive swimming due to thoracic outlet syndrome.[14]


Jonkers received an Australian Sports Medal in 2000.[19] At the age of 23, she was named the 2005 Queensland Young Achiever by Premier Peter Beattie.[11] In 2007, she was named the inaugural winner of Cosmopolitan magazine's "fun fearless female award"[20] recognising Australia's most inspirational women who are encouraging others to pursue their dreams.[21] She was featured on page 76 of Cosmopolitan the month that she was recognised.[4] She used her prize money to set up the "Sporting Dreams Fund", which helps people with disabilities to develop their sporting talents.[22] In 2010, she was named the Sporting Wheelie of the Year by the Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Association.[16] In 2011, she was an Australia Day Ambassador.[23]


  1. ^ Australian Paralympic Committee Media Guide Athens (PDF). Sydney: Australian Paralympic Committee. 2004. p. 75. 
  2. ^ "Gallery". Marayke Jonkers' website. Retrieved 22 August 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Culp, Brad (10 August 2010). "Paratriathlon Feature: Marayke Jonkers". International Triathlon Union. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Jonkers makes latest Cosmo". Sunshine Coast Daily. Sunshine Coast, Queensland. 17 July 2007. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c d Gatehouse, Julie (10 November 2009). "Paralympian Marayke dives into new job". Sunshine Coast, Queensland: University of the Sunshine Coast. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c d Jonkers, Marayke. "Bachelor of Social Science graduate with a physical impairment". Australia: Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training (ADCET). Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  7. ^ "April 2008 Back Issues - Link Magazine". Australia: Link Magazine. April 2008. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  8. ^ a b c "2010 Queensland Swimming Age Multi Class Championships". Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Association. 24 October 2010. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  9. ^ a b c McGarry, Andrew (14 September 2008). "Veteran Jonkers claims elusive silver". Melbourne, Victoria: Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  10. ^ a b c d "Marayke Jonkers Swimming Results". Swimming Western Australia. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  11. ^ a b c d e f "Queensland : Winners 2005, Young Achiever Awards". Awards Australia. 2005. Archived from the original on 23 June 2005. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  12. ^ "Marayke Jonkers". Australian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 23 August 2015. 
  13. ^ a b c Results for Marayke Jonkers from the International Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 22 August 2012.
  14. ^ a b c d "Paralympian Marayke Jonkers announces her retirement". Swimming Australia. 10 December 2011. Retrieved 22 August 2015. 
  15. ^ "More gold and world records for Australians". Australian Paralympic Committee. 20 August 2010. Retrieved 22 August 2015. 
  16. ^ a b "The Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Sport and Recreation Association of Queensland Newsletter December 2010 - January 2011". Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Sport and Recreation Association of Queensland Newsletter. Queensland, Australia: Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Sport and Recreation Association of Queensland. X (5). December 2010 – January 2011. Archived from the original on 16 February 2011. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  17. ^ "Marayke Jonkers results". International Triathlon Union. Retrieved 23 August 2015. 
  18. ^ "AIS Roll of Honour for the Paralympics". Australian Sports Commission Website. Retrieved 14 March 2012. 
  19. ^ "JONKERS, Marayke Caroline: Australian Sports Medal". It's an Honour. Retrieved 23 August 2015. 
  20. ^ "Paralympian wins $10,000 Olympic grant". The Age. 4 September 2007. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  21. ^ "News | APC Corporate". Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  22. ^ Jonkers, Marayke (24 June 2008). "Call for Sporting Dreams Fund Applications". Queensland, Australia: Sporting Wheelies. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  23. ^ "2012 Australia Day Ambassador Program". Australia Day. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 

External links[edit]