Andrew Kurka27 January 1992 USA
- LATEST TRIUMPHS:
- 2017 World Para Alpine Skiing Championships: Gold - downhill; Silver - giant slalom; Bronze - super-G
After a series of injuries that prevented him from competing at more events, Andrew Kurka is hoping 2017/2018 will be “his season”, ending with reaching the podium at his maiden Paralympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea.
But as a child his dream had nothing to do with slopes and snow. Kurka wanted to become a professional wrestler and one day qualify for the Olympic Games. However, at age 13 an accident while riding an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) severely damaged three vertebrae in the middle of his spinal cord and his dream was over.
Two years later he tried mono-ski for the first time and in 2010 was called up to the USA´s Paralympic team. Since then, he has competed at various World Cups and three World Championships in 2013, 2015 and 2017.
He claimed his first major medal in Panorama, Canada, in 2015, when he took bronze in the men´s super-G sitting.
Two years later, Kurka delivered the best performance to date, winning gold in the downhill, silver in the giant slalom and bronze in the super-G at the Worlds in Tarvisio, Italy.
Kurka is also a bodybuilder, works as a country music DJ and chronicles his adventures in YouTube videos.