Stirling's Scott becomes most decorated Olympian at a single Games

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Duncan Scott wins fourth medal of the Tokyo Games
Stirling swimmer Duncan Scott (right) makes history by winning his fourth medal of the Tokyo Games. (Al Bello / Olympic Games 2021 / Getty Images).

University of Stirling swimmer Duncan Scott has made history by becoming the most successful British Olympian at a single Olympic Games - winning a record four medals.

The 24-year-old surpasses the likes of Sir Chris Hoy, Jason Kenny and Max Whitlock - who all won three medals at a single Games - after winning silver in the Men's 4 x 100m Medley Relay, the final swim event of the Tokyo Olympics.

The win also moves Scott onto a total of six career Olympic medals (one gold, five silver) - for Team GB, only Hoy, Kenny and Bradley Wiggins have won more.

Scott - who had earlier won gold in the Men's 4x200m Freestyle and silver in the Men's 200m Freestyle and 200m Individual Medley - competed in the relay alongside teammates Luke Greenbank, Adam Peaty and James Guy. The team smashed their own European record with a time of 3:27.51, finishing just 0.73 seconds behind the United States who set a new world record of 3:26.78.

The win took Team GB swimmers to four golds, three silvers and a bronze for the Games - Britain's best ever result in the swimming. Five of those medals came from University of Stirling swimmers - with Kathleen Dawson and her teammates triumphing in the Mixed 4x100m Medley Relay.


Asked about becoming the most successful British athlete at any individual Games, Scott said: "It's a lot of good teammates, that's what that is. I am very fortunate to be part of some excellent relay teams, this being one of them."

Reflecting on the race, he said: "I think initially we are all pretty disappointed - but I think, in 2015, when we started coming together, back to back Olympic silvers in this event, we'd take that all day.

"We were coming in here to really challenge the Americans, like we did the last time at the Worlds. I think, looking at the splits, we all swam well - slightly disappointed with mine, but that's just the way it is. It's been a tough week, but I think we've got to be happy with that."

Duncan Scott pictured after winning gold at the Olympics (not for re-use, Getty Images)

Duncan Scott has won four medals at the Tokyo Olympics - taking him to six career medals at the competition (Ian MacNicol/Olympic Games, Tokyo/Getty Images).

Scott, from Glasgow, kicked off his medal haul in Tokyo with a silver in the Men's 200m Freestyle - finishing just four hundredths of a second behind his Team GB teammate Tom Dean. He then became Olympic champion after swimming the final leg of the Men's 4x200m Freestyle final - in a team including Dean, Guy and Matthew Richards. Scott touched home, ahead of the second-placed Russian Olympic Team, on 6:58.58 - the third-fastest time in history and a new European record.

In the Men's 200m Individual Medley, Scott secured another silver medal - finishing just 0.28 seconds behind China's Shun Wang - before completing the meet with Sunday morning's Men's 4x100m Medley Relay.

Scott's accolade comes three years after he became Scotland’s most decorated swimmer at a single Commonwealth Games at Gold Coast 2018.

Duncan Scott and Steve Tigg

Duncan Scott pictured alongside Steven Tigg, Head Performance Swim Coach at the University of Stirling.

Steve Tigg, Head Performance Swim Coach at the University of Stirling, said: "It has been a fast-paced nine days here in Tokyo - and to be part of the best ever Team GB swimming performance at an Olympics is a real privilege. I know the hard work that has gone on - in incredibly challenging times - to get to this point, both in Stirling and across the wider British swimming community.

"The University of Stirling performances have been excellent - we're all extremely proud of their efforts throughout this meet. To have two of our swimmers return Olympic champions is outstanding - and we are absolutely delighted with the five medals."

Reflecting on Scott's record-breaking four medals, Tigg said: "Duncan has always been special - his success hasn't been the result of just a few years work. All of life's experiences - good or bad - prepare us to face our biggest challenges. Having been part of Duncan's journey for 16 years, this meet was always a key goal on the journey.

"His level of preparation and commitment to try and achieve his goals was nothing short of inspiring. Although perhaps not all of the dreams were fulfilled, it's fitting that his ambition, desire and relentless competitive nature has won him the accolade of Team GB's most decorated athlete at an Olympics.

"Duncan is one of Scotland's all-time best athletes across all sports - and he won't stop here with two or three more Olympics left in him. I hope he enjoys all the praise and adulation he duly deserves."

Cathy Gallagher
Cathy Gallagher
Executive Director of Sport, University of Stirling
We are sending our warmest congratulations to Duncan and Kathleen - and to all of our University of Stirling athletes and coaches in Tokyo. We look forward to welcoming them back to campus to celebrate their success in the coming weeks.

Cathy Gallagher, Executive Director of Sport at the University of Stirling, said: "Team GB's swimmers capped an incredible Olympic Games by winning silver - and their eighth medal - in the final event. We are especially proud that five of those medals were won by Duncan and Kathleen, both on our high performance swim programme here at the University of Stirling.

"Duncan has also cemented a place in history by becoming the first British athlete to win four medals at a single Olympic Games - an outstanding, admirable and well-deserved achievement that is testament to his talent, hard work and commitment to his sport. With a total of six Olympic, seven Commonwealth, and five World Championship medals to his name, Duncan is a true inspiration who epitomises the Olympism values of excellence, friendship and respect.

"It is also important to pay tribute to the efforts of our swim coaches Steven Tigg, Bradley Hay and Josh Williamson - and the wider support team at Stirling - who have played a key role in preparing our athletes for the Games.

"We are sending our warmest congratulations to Duncan and Kathleen - and to all of our University of Stirling athletes and coaches in Tokyo. We look forward to welcoming them back to campus to celebrate their success in the coming weeks."


Tigg also paid tribute to the support team behind the athletes - and paid a special tribute to the team doctor, Dr Carrie McCrea-Routray and her family.

He said: "None of the athletes would be here without the great team of coaches and support staff throughout the swimming system, but particularly in Stirling.

"Tragically, our doctor, Carrie, lost her son Matthew not long before these Olympics. I would like to dedicate the performances of all of the Stirling athletes to Carrie's family, in particular her son Daniel, who inspired us all before we travelled to Tokyo by participating in an incredible Olympic torch relay to raise funds for his late brother's school.

"We all send our condolences and thoughts to Carrie and her family."

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