Celebrating 25 years of Para Sport: Daredevil helps Canada nearly double medal total at Nagano 1998

Canadian Paralympic Committee

March 10, 2021

Canada grabs 15 Paralympic medals after eight podium visits four years earlier

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Back in the 1990s, daredevil Stacy Kohut was arguably Canada’s first winter Para sport star. A child of parents who lived in Alberta’s drag racing culture in the 1970s, Kohut helped Canada nearly double its medal intake at the 1998 Paralympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan. 

Kohut, then a fearless 27-year-old extreme sport specialist, collected three silver medals in Para alpine skiing in the sit skiing events. He was second in the giant slalom, slalom, and Super-G. Four years earlier he was Canada’s only gold medallist at the Lillehammer Games, where Canada earned eight medals.

Twelve of Canada’s 15 medals in Nagano were collected on the slopes. Visually impaired racer Marilyn Winder won a silver and two bronze. Sit skier Dan Wesley was the sole Paralympic Games champion winning the Super-G ahead of Kohut, and Karolina Wisniewska captured two silvers in her Paralympic debut. 

The Nagano Games were also notable for Colette Bourgonje’s double silver showing in cross country skiing. Already reaching the podium in wheelchair racing at Barcelona 1992 and Atlanta 1996, she became one of the few Paralympians to win medals at both a summer and winter Games.  

A passionate sportsman, Kohut, now 50, is still very active shredding the trails in Whistler, B.C. on his four-wheel mountain bike.

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.  

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