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INTERNATIONAL PARALYMPIC COMMITTEE
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14692-James Whitley photo

James Whitley

Alpine Skiing

Biography

Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Limb deficiency
Origin of Impairment
Congenital
Classification
LW5/7-3

Further personal information

Residence
Eastbourne, ENG
Occupation
Athlete
Languages
English, French

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He first tried skiing at age four in Courcheval, France.
Why this sport?
He sustained serious injuries at age six after he was involved in a boating accident with his family. During his rehabilitation he was introduced to Nick Webborn, who was the chief medical officer for the 2012 Paralympic Games in London. "Nick knew I was a speed freak and I loved my skiing. He put me in touch with a few of his friends and a year later I had a try-out at the Chill Factor in Manchester [England]."
Name of coach
John Clark [national]

International debut

Year
2011
Competing for
Great Britain
Location
Austria

General interest

Hobbies
Swimming, fishing, watching Formula One. (IPC, 10 Feb 2018; Athlete, 18 Dec 2013)
Memorable sporting achievement
Competing at the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, and qualifying for the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games. (IPC, 10 Feb 2018)
Most influential person in career
His parents. (Athlete, 18 Dec 2013)
Hero / Idol
British alpine skier Dave Ryding. (IPC, 10 Feb 2018)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." [Franklin D Roosevelt] (IPC, 10 Feb 2018)
Famous relatives
He is the grandson of former Prime Minister of Northern Ireland, James Chichester-Clark. (midulstermail.co.uk, 13 Feb 2014)
Ambitions
To compete at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing. (bbc.com, 17 Mar 2018)
Impairment
He was born without both hands. Doctors have constructed fingers for each limb, but despite more than 30 operations, they lack sufficient nerves or muscles to function. (Athlete, 18 Dec 2013)
Other information
BOATING ACCIDENT
He was left with serious injuries at age six after he was involved in a boating accident. A power boat with an outboard motor went over the top of the smaller boat James and his family were in. "Our boat sank with James trapped underneath. Fortunately he was wearing a life jacket, so he came to the surface after several minutes. He sustained a great deal of internal bleeding, broken legs, ribs, jaw and had to be resuscitated on the lake side. It took eight hours of stabilising him at the hospital, before they could take him in to surgery. Following that, he had lost the feeling from the waist down, and was in a wheelchair for several weeks," his mother Tara said. (eastbourneherald.co.uk, 25 Feb 2018)

Results

Unit Date Rank
IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships (La Molina, Spain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Slalom Standing Race 1 2013-02-24 9999
Men's Giant Slalom Standing Race 1 2013-02-26 16
Paralympic Winter Games 2014 (Sochi, Russia)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Slalom Standing Final Round 2014-03-13 15
Men's Giant Slalom Standing Final Round 2014-03-15 14
2015 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships Panorama (Panorama, Canada)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Giant Slalom Standing Race 1 2015-03-08 18
Men's Slalom Standing Race 1 2015-03-10 9
2017 IPC Alpine skiing World Championships Tarvisio, ITA (Tarvisio, Italy)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Downhill Standing Race 1 2017-01-25 12
Men's Super-G Standing Race 1 2017-01-26 14
Men's Super-Combined Standing Race 1 2017-01-28 9999
Men's Giant Slalom Standing Race 1 2017-01-30 14
Men's Slalom Standing Race 1 2017-01-31 7
Pyeongchang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games (Pyeongchang, South Korea)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Downhill Standing Final 2018-03-10 10
Men's Super-G Standing Final 2018-03-11 22
Men's Super Combined Standing Final 2018-03-13 11
Men's Giant Slalom Standing Final 2018-03-14 11
Men's Slalom Standing Final 2018-03-17 10
Kranjska Gora/Sella Nevea 2019 World Para Alpine Skiing Championships (Kranjska Gora/Sella Nevea, Slovenia)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Giant Slalom Standing Race 1 2019-01-21 13
Men's Slalom Standing Race 1 2019-01-23 8
Men's Downhill Standing Race 1 2019-01-30 14
Men's Super-Combined Standing Race 1 2019-01-31 5
Men's Super-G Standing Race 1 (from SC) 2019-01-31 10