Sochi, Russia, 14/03/2014.
Photo(Scott Grant/Canadian Paralympic Committee)Chris Williamson and Nick Brush celebrate their bronze medal win in the slalom in Sochi, RUS at the Paralympic Winter GamesSochi, Russia, 14/03/2014.
Photo(Scott Grant/Canadian Paralympic Committee)Williamson and Brush celebrate their bonze medal win in the slalom at the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, RussiaSochi, Russia, 14/03/2014.
Photo(Scott Grant/Canadian Paralympic Committee)Williamson and Brush showoff their hardware in Sochi, RUS at the 2014 Paralympic Winter GamesMarch 2013 (Photo by Marcus Hartmann/Alpine Canada)Chris Williamson and guide Robin Fémy on the podium at the 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in La Molina, Spain.March 2013 (Photo by Marcus Hartmann/Alpine Canada)
Chris Williamson in downhill at the 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in La Molina, Spain.March 2013 (Photo by JS Labrie/Alpine Canada)Chris Williamson during super-G inspection at the 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in La Molina, Spain.

Chris Williamson

Para-alpine

One of the world’s most decorated para-alpine athletes, Williamson claimed his 100th IPC World Cup podium in 2011, and earned five more in 2013 during his first season back after a two-year absence due to injury. The oldest member of Canada’s national team at 41, Williamson competes in the visually impaired category with guide Robin Fémy. He is a veteran of three Paralympics and has more than a dozen IPC World Championship medals. When home in Toronto, Ont., Williamson balances skiing with a full-time job and spending time with his wife and children.

 
  • Sochi, Russia, 14/03/2014.
Photo(Scott Grant/Canadian Paralympic Committee)
  • Sochi, Russia, 14/03/2014.
Photo(Scott Grant/Canadian Paralympic Committee)
  • Sochi, Russia, 14/03/2014.
Photo(Scott Grant/Canadian Paralympic Committee)
  • March 2013 (Photo by Marcus Hartmann/Alpine Canada)
  • March 2013 (Photo by Marcus Hartmann/Alpine Canada)
  • March 2013 (Photo by JS Labrie/Alpine Canada)
 
Home / Athletes / Chris Williamson

Top Results

105 IPC World Cup podiums (56 victories)
13 IPC World Championship medals
Gold – Slalom – Paralympic Winter Games – Salt Lake City, USA (2002)

IPC World Cup ranking:

(2012-13)
Overall: 5th
Slalom: 6th
Giant slalom: 3rd
Downhill: 3rd

Birth date: 05/05/1972
Birth place:
Edmonton, Alta.
Residence:
Markham, Ont.
Hometown:
Toronto, Ont.
Ski club: Springhill Ski Centre
Made team: 1998
Height: 5-10
Weight: 192 pounds
Skis: Rossignol
Boots: Rossignol
Poles: Komperdell
Helmet: Alpina
Goggles: Alpina
Q&A

Nickname: Spyder, which was given to me by my father when I was a speed skater.

First memory of skiing? Traveling in a big, twelve-passenger van to go skiing with my dad, uncle and cousin every weekend in Manitoba and just trying to ski as fast as possible. To turn is to admit defeat! 

Best moment in ski racing? There have been many great moments, but the best is winning a gold medal at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games on the last day. I tore my MCL the day before the opening ceremonies and walked through them on crutches, so to win was especially sweet. 

Worst moment in ski racing? After medaling in the first four events of the 2011 World Championships, I crashed on the way to inspection. I blew out my knee, crushed my wrist, and broke two ribs. I spent the next year having surgeries and missed the entire 2012 season.

What is your Paralympic dream? My brother, Tyler, competes on the Canadian speed skating team, and my Olympic/Paralympic dream is for both Tyler and I to medal in Sochi. Having brothers medal in two different sports doesn’t happen that often!

What is the best thing about having the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia? The slalom event will be held under lights at night, which will be really exciting. I haven’t raced a night slalom since I was in university, which is more than 20 years ago.

If you could listen to one song before leaving the start gate, what would it be? “Jailbreak” by AC/DC.

If you could bring any three people in the world - living or from the past - to one of your races, who would they be? First, my father, who never had the chance to see me make the national team or the success I have had. Second, Gord Reid, who is the reason any of my family skis. He is a member of the Manitoba Alpine Ski Hall of Fame and was a true builder of the sport in Manitoba. Third, I would bring my grandfather Earl Williamson, who, just like my dad, died when my father was a teenager, so I never got to meet him.

Hidden talent: Even as a visually impaired athlete I love playing basketball. I played on my high school varsity team.

If you had just one day left to live, how would you spend it? I would spend it with my wife and kids. I already spend too much time away from home, so I love every minute I can spend with them.

If you could own a business or be trained in any career other than ski racing, what would you choose? Gym teacher.

When I’m not skiing, you can probably find me: working, training, doing activities with my kids, or watching Game of Thrones. 

What’s the best thing about your hometown? I have two hometowns. Toronto has everything you could want – it just takes a while to get there. Winnipeg is the opposite: if you’re meeting friends you can be anywhere in 20 minutes. I love both cities.

What's the most surprising thing in your suitcase when you’re on the road? I have a small photo book that I keep in my backpack on the hill so my family is always with me before my race.

What's your favourite thing to eat or drink during race season?  I love when I can have pizza in Europe.

If you could design your own World Cup spot anywhere in the world, where would it be?  Winnipeg, M.B., or just outside of Winnipeg where I grew up skiing at Springhill Ski Centre. It would be great for a night slalom. We would just have to add a few feet of vertical! It’s pretty small, but it’s nice to show that prairie boys can ski too.

Where is your favorite place to race or train? Obersaxen, Switzerland. It has what is probably the longest para-alpine World Cup downhill we have ever raced. It’s over two minutes long and in the middle you go through a chute that is bordered by two barns. There’s nothing quite like it. 

If you could have one superpower, what would it be? Regeneration, like Wolverine. I crash too much and I am getting too old! 

If you could build your dream home anywhere in the world, where would it be? Tough call. I love living in a city because I don’t drive and need public transportation, but I love skiing and Canada, so if could we move Whistler to Toronto that would be perfect. You know, just off Yonge Street.

What’s the funniest thing you’ve seen a teammate do while on the road? I saw a visually impaired girl from the US para-ski team use her sister’s driver’s license to get into a bar. I guess the bouncer didn’t wonder why a lady waking in with a white cane had a driver’s license.

Who is someone you admire in sport? My father, who taught me to be the athlete I have become, and my brother, who has worked so hard reach his dreams in speed skating, despite changing disciplines and other setbacks.

 

IPC World Cup podiums
1st - Slalom - Sochi, Russia (2013)
3rd - Downhill - Sochi, Russia (2013)
3rd - Slalom - Sestriere, ITA (2013)
1st - Giant slalom - Sestriere, ITA (2013)
2nd - Giant slalom - Sestriere, ITA (2013)
1st – Giant slalom – Arta Terme, ITA (2011)
2nd – Giant slalom – Arta Terme, ITA (2011)
1st – Slalom – Arta Terme, ITA (2011)
1st – Downhill – Sestriere, ITA (2010)
2nd – Downhill – Sestriere, ITA (2010)
1st – Super-G – Sestriere, ITA (2010)
2nd – Super-G – Sestriere, ITA (2010)
1st – Slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2010)
1st – Slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2010)
1st – Slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2010)
1st – Giant slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2010)
2nd – Giant slalom – Roll Rinn, AUT (2010)
1st – Slalom – Roll Rinn, AUT (2010)
2nd – Downhill – Sestriere, ITA (2009)
2nd – Super combined – Sestriere, ITA (2009)
2nd – Giant slalom – La Molina, ESP (2009)
2nd – Giant slalom – La Molina, ESP (2009)
2nd – Slalom – La Molina, ESP (2009)
3rd – Slalom – La Molina, ESP (2009)
1st – Slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2008)
1st – Giant slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2008)
1st – Super combined – Abtenau, AUT (2008)
1st – Super combined – Abtenau, AUT (2008)
1st – Super-G – Abtenau, AUT (2008)
1st – Super-G – Abtenau, AUT (2008)
1st – Slalom – Queyras, FRA (2008)
1st – Slalom – Queyras, FRA (2008)
1st – Super combined – High1, KOR (2008)
2nd – Super-G – High1, KOR (2008)
3rd – Giant slalom – High1, KOR (2008)
3rd – Giant slalom – Hakuba, JPN (2008)
2nd – Slalom – Kimberley, B.C. (2007)
1st – Giant slalom – Kimberley, B.C. (2007)
1st – Super-G – Kimberley, B.C. (2007)
1st – Slalom – Aspen, USA (2007)
1st – Slalom – Aspen, USA (2007)
3rd – Giant slalom – Aspen, USA (2007)
1st – Super-G – Aspen, USA (2007)
1st – Super-G – Aspen, USA (2007)
2nd – Super-G – Arta Terme, ITA (2007)
2nd – Giant slalom – Arta Terme, ITA (2007)
2nd – Slalom – Arta Terme, ITA (2007)
3rd – Slalom – Yong Pyong, KOR (2006)
3rd – Giant slalom – Yong Pyong, KOR (2006)
2nd – Giant slalom – Yong Pyong, KOR (2006)
1st – Super-G – Yong Pyong, KOR (2006)
2nd – Super-G – Yong Pyong, KOR (2006)
1st – Giant slalom – ShigaKogen, JPN (2006)
1st – Giant slalom – ShigaKogen, JPN (2006)
1st – Slalom – ShigaKogen, JPN (2006)
1st – Slalom – Artesina, ITA (2006)
2nd – Giant slalom – Artesina, ITA (2006)
1st – Super-G – Artesina, ITA (2006)
3rd – Giant slalom – Steamboat Springs, USA (2005)
1st – Super-G – Kimberley, B.C. (2005)
1st – Super-G – Kimberley, B.C. (2005)
2nd – Super-G – Fendels-Ried-Prutz, AUT (2005)
2nd – Super-G – Fendels-Ried-Prutz, AUT (2005)
1st – Downhill – Klosters, SUI (2005)
3rd – Giant slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2004)
3rd – Downhill – Sestriere, ITA (2004)
1st – Giant slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2003)
2nd – Super-G – Abtenau, AUT (2003)
1st – Slalom – Abtenau, AUT (2003)
3rd – Giant slalom – Wildschönau, AUT (2003)
2nd – Slalom – Wildschönau, AUT (2003)
3rd – Super-G – Wildschönau, AUT (2002)
3rd – Slalom – Wildschönau, AUT (2002)
3rd – Slalom – Wildschönau, AUT (2002)
1st – Giant slalom – Kimberley, B.C. (2002)
2nd – Super-G – Kimberley, B.C. (2002)
2nd – Super-G – Kimberley, B.C. (2002)
3rd – Slalom – Queyras/Arvieux/Molines, FRA (2002)
3rd – Slalom – Queyras/Arvieux/Molines, FRA (2002)
3rd – Giant slalom – Abtenau/Salzburg, AUT (2001)
1st – Downhill – Kimberley, B.C. (2001)
1st – Giant slalom – Kimberley, B.C. (2001)
1st – Slalom – Kimberley, B.C. (2001)
1st – Downhill – Obersaxen/Graubünden, SUI (2001)
3rd – Downhill – Obersaxen/Graubünden, SUI (2001)
1st – Super-G – Obersaxen/Graubünden, SUI (2001)
2nd – Super-G – Obersaxen/Graubünden, SUI (2001)

2014 Paralympic Winter Games - Sochi, RUS
3rd - Slalom
5th -  Giant slalom 

2010 Paralympic Winter Games – Whistler, B.C.
4th – Giant slalom
4th – Super combined
6th – Super-G
6th – Slalom

2006 Paralympic Winter Games – Turin, ITA
2nd – Downhill
3rd – Super-G

2002 Paralympic Winter Games – Salt Lake City, USA
1st – Slalom
5th – Super-G
5th – Giant slalom

 TELUS Canadian Para-Alpine Championships
Canadian champion – Slalom – Courtenay, B.C. (2010)

IPC World Ski Championships
3rd - Giant slalom- La Molina, SPA (2013)
1st - Super combined - La Molina, SPA (2013)
2nd - Super-G - La Molina, SPA (2013)
3rd – Downhill – La Molina, SPA (2013)
3rd – Downhill – Sestriere, ITA (2011)
2nd – Super-G – Sestriere, ITA (2011)
3rd – Super combined – Sestriere, ITA (2011)
3rd – Slalom – Sestriere, ITA (2011)
2nd – Slalom – High1, KOR (2009)
3rd – Downhill – High1, KOR (2009)
1st – Super-G – High1, KOR (2009)
3rd – Downhill – Wildschönau, AUT (2004)
3rd – Giant slalom – Wildschönau, AUT (2004)