Anyone that followed the 2009 World Para Alpine Skiing Championships knew the avalanche that was about to hit the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games the next year.
It was Canada’s Para alpine skiing team.
At the 2009 worlds held in PyeongChang, South Korea, the Canadian skiers topped the medal board with nine gold, six silver and one bronze for 16 total. That was three better than Austria and four more than Germany.
The names that collected medals for Canada would become legends in Vancouver-Whistler and beyond.
Lauren Woolstencroft won four gold medals at the 2009 worlds with victories in the downhill, super G, giant slalom and slalom. A year later, she would add another gold in the super combined in her record performance at the home Games.
Viviane Forest, previously a two-time Paralympic Games champion with Canada’s goalball team, showed her potential on the slopes with a gold in the super combined and four silver medals in the visually impaired category with her guide Lindsay Debou. In Vancouver, Forest took a gold, three silver and a bronze.
Also on the medal podium for Canada at those 2009 worlds were sit skiers Kimberley Joines with two gold and a silver while on the men’s side Christopher Williamson earned a medal of each colour and Josh Dueck took gold in the sit skiing downhill, the same event he would win in Sochi 2014.
This year, the Canadian Paralympic Committee and Pfizer Canada are celebrating 25 years of supporting and promoting the Paralympic Movement together. Throughout 2021, we will look back on special sporting moments and milestones from each year of the partnership.
Click here to read each moment so far.