TOKYO — Baltimore's own Daniel Romanchuk earned the first gold medal of his Paralympic career on Sunday as he won the men’s T54 400-meter race at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games.
Romanchuk finished in 45.72 seconds, just squeaking past by Athiwat Paeng-Nuea who finished second in 45.73 seconds.
"This class (T54) is so competitive. It could be anyone's race on any given day,” he said after the race. “It went very well today. I got off the start line pretty fast and had a good acceleration and just tried to hold the tough speed."
Romanchuk narrowly missed the podium at Saturday’s 5000-meter race. He placed fourth by just 0.14 seconds.
"One thing I have come back to is just taking things one day at a time. I try not to look at the bigger picture too much. I just try and see what today has," he said.
Romanchuk was born with spinal bifida, where the spinal cord does not properly develop in the womb.
Romanchuk will have the chance for more medals. He is scheduled to compete in the T54 100-meter dash, the 800-meter race, 1500-meter race, and the men’s marathon.