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Upper body of smiling man holding medal

Chris Klebl

Nordic Skiing
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Canada’s Chris Klebl completed a shock victory at Sochi 2014, crossing the men’s 10km cross-country sitting finish line in first place.

His performance was an incredible upturn in form, having finished far away from the medals at the 2013 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships in Solleftea, Sweden, just 12 months before.

Now ranked amongst the top cross-country skiers in the world, behind Ukraine’s Maksim Yarovyi, Klebl’s comeback from an abysmal 2013 Worlds started with two wins in the 2014 IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup.

That cemented his potential shown in 2011 in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia, where he topped the podium in the men’s 15km cross-country sitting and won silver in the 1km sprint.

Klebl was born in Germany as a US citizen, competing for America at Turin 2006 and Vancouver 2010. However in 2011, he made the switch to Canada who he will be flying the flag for at the 2017 World Para Nordic Skiing World Championships inFinsterau, Germany.

Biography

Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Spinal Cord Injuries
Origin of Impairment
Acquired
Classification
LW11

Further personal information

Residence
Canmore, AB, CAN
Occupation
Athlete
Languages
English
Higher education
Economics - Syracuse University: United States

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He skied and snowboarded while growing up in Austria. He began competing in Para Nordic skiing in 2005.
Why this sport?
He was introduced to the sport by US Para skier Monica Bascio.
Club / Team
Fast Trax Run & Ski Club: Edmonton, AB, CAN
Name of coach
Robin McKeever [national], CAN

International debut

Year
2011
Competing for
Canada

General interest

Hobbies
Travelling. (Twitter profile, 19 Sep 2016)
Injuries
In late 2016 he underwent surgery on a skin and bone infection that required a six week recovery stay in hospital, which he left at the end of January 2017. He had been dealing with an infected wound since August 2016. (thecragandcanyon.ca, 12 Mar 2017)

He suffered a broken leg in September 2011 returning four months later to win a silver medal in the 15km race at the 2012 World Cup in Cable, WI, United States of America. (paralympic.ca, 12 Feb 2014)
Impairment
He has paraplegia after a snowboard accident involving a cliff jump in 1995. (usparalympics.org, 14 Mar 2011)
Other information
FROM EUROPE TO NORTH AMERICA
Born in Germany as a US citizen, he grew up in neighbouring Austria where he skied and snowboarded regularly before moving to the United States of America in 1987. He represented the United States of America in para-Nordic skiing at the 2006 and 2010 Paralympic Winter Games. In 2011 he began competing for Canada. (usparalympics.org, 14 Mar 2011; usparalympics.org, 08 Mar 2010; usskiteam.com, 14 Mar 2011; IPC, 24 Jan 2013)

Results

Unit Date Rank
Torino 2006 Paralympic Winter Games (Torino, Italy)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 5 km Sitski Final Round 23
Men's 10 km Sitski Final Round 18
Men's 15 km Sitski Final Round 11
Men's 1x3.75/2x5 km Relay Open Final Round 6
Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games (Vancouver, Canada)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 1 km Sprint Sitting Qualification 9
Men's 10 km Sitting Final Round 16
Men's 15 km Sitting Final Round 8
IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships Solleftea (Solleftea, Sweden)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Sprint - Classic Sitting Final 2013-02-25 13
Men's Long Distance - Classic Sitting Final 2013-02-26 19
Men's Middle Distance - Classic Sitting Final 2013-03-05 21
Paralympic Winter Games 2014 (Sochi, Russia)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 15 km Sitting Final Round 2014-03-09 6
Men's 1 km Sprint Sitting Semifinal 2014-03-12 7
4x2.5 km Open Relay Final Round 2014-03-15 4
Men's 10 km Sitting Final Round 2014-03-16 1
2015 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships Cable (Cable, United States of America)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Long Distance - Free Style Sitting Race 1 2015-01-25 4
Men's Sprint - Classic Sitting Race 1 2015-01-28 13
Men's Middle Distance - Classic Sitting Race 1 2015-01-31 5
Mixed Relay Final 2015-02-01 4
Pyeongchang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games (Pyeongchang, South Korea)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 15km Sitting Final 2018-03-11 8
Men's 1.1km Sprint Sitting Final 2018-03-14 11
Men's 7.5km Sitting Final 2018-03-17 6
4x2.5km Mixed Relay Final 2018-03-18 2