Mark Arendz had a promising start to the season. The Canadian won gold in the men’s cross-country middle distance standing at the World Cup in Vuokatti, Finland. He also claimed two silvers and one bronze in biathlon.
It was his return to competition after a superb performance at PyeongChang 2018, where he became the first Canadian to win six medals overall at a single edition of the Winter Paralympics.
Arendz won his maiden Winter Paralympic title in the biathlon long distance. The Nordic skier went on to seal silver in the biathlon sprint and cross-country mixed relay; and bronze in the biathlon middle distance, and cross-country middle distance and sprint races.
Before that, Arendz celebrated two golds, one silver and one bronze at Finsterau 2017, his best performance at a World Championships. He was the fastest in both the biathlon middle distance and sprint events.
He also finished second in the 2016-2017 Biathlon World Cup overall rankings.
Arendz has competed at two other Paralympic Winter Games: Vancouver 2010 and Sochi 2014, where he won one silver and one bronze in biathlon. He was also named 2014 Senior Male Athlete of the Year in Prince Edward Island, Canada.
He first tried skiing at age five. Two years later, he was involved in a farm accident which resulted in the amputation of his left arm above the elbow. He was attempting to put corn into a corn auger and lost his balance.
Arendz still continued practising the sport, even taking part in able-bodied skiing competitions. After watching the Salt Lake City 2002 Olympic Games, he became especially interested in biathlon.
He developed a deep sense of community after neighbouring farmers, friends and strangers from his hometown helped his family while he was recovering from the amputation of his arm following his accident.
"After my accident, I quickly witnessed how a community comes together through a traumatic time. Since then I have always been driven to give back to that community.”
In 2014 he worked with charitable organisation SchoolBOX in Nicaragua, where he helped build a school for a community that had been affected by a landslide.
Further personal information
Sport specific information
He was named 2018 Male Athlete of the Year by Biathlon Canada. (markarendz.ca, 17 Dec 2020)
In 2018 he received the Order of Prince Edward Island in Canada. (paralympic.org, 06 Dec 2018; assembly.pe.ca, 01 Oct 2018)
In 2014 a ski trail in Brookvale, PEI, Canada, was renamed 'Mark's A2Z Trail' in his honour. In 2018 the Mark Arendz Provincial Ski Park in Brookvale was also named after him. (paralympic.org, 06 Dec 2018; theguardian.pe.ca, 19 Dec 2014; cbc.ca, 19 Dec 2014)
He was named Best Male Athlete of the Year by the Canadian Paralympic Committee in 2018. (newswire.ca, 30 Oct 2018)
He was Canada's flag bearer at the closing ceremony of the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang. (cbc.ca, 03 Jun 2018)
He was named 2013 and 218 Open Male Athlete of the Year in Alberta, Canada. (cccski.com, 09 Apr 2014; rmotoday.com, 09 May 2019)
He says he is particularly grateful to the neighbouring farmers, friends and strangers in his hometown of Hartsville, PEI, Canada, who helped his family while he was recovering from the amputation of his arm. "After my accident, I quickly witnessed how a community comes together through a traumatic time. Since then I have always been driven to give back to that community. More recently I understood that the pride I give the community for my success is one of the greatest things I can pass along. To return home and share my experiences and the Paralympic medals is something special. It is one of the reasons I enjoy what I do." (paralympic.org, 06 Dec 2018; theguardian.pe.ca, 06 Jul 2018)
He has been an athlete representative for AthletesCAN, and he has served as a member of the executive board for the 2023 Canada Winter Games in Prince Edward Island. "Once I heard that PEI was awarded the Games, I wanted to be a part of that. And when the opportunity arose to do so I leapt towards it." (markarendz.ca, 19 Feb 2020; athletescan.com, 01 Apr 2018)
In 2014 he worked with charitable organisation SchoolBOX in Nicaragua, where he helped build a school for a community that had been affected by a landslide. He has also been an ambassador for non-profit organisations KidSport and The War Amps in Canada. (theguardian.pe.ca, 03 May 2014, 06 Jul 2018)
He is studying for a degree in kinesiology at the University of Calgary in Canada. (cbc.ca, 18 Sep 2021)
|Men's 12.5 km Individual Standing||Final Round||16|
|Men's 3 km Pursuit Standing||Qualification||7|
|Men's 3 km Pursuit Standing||Final Round||7|
|Men's 1x4 / 2x5 km Relay Open||Final Round||7|
|Men's 20 km Standing||Final Round||9999|
|Men's 1 km Sprint Standing||Qualification||9|
|Men's 10 km Standing||Final Round||12|
|Men's Sprint - Classic Standing||Final||2013-02-25||12|
|Men's Short Distance Standing||Final||2013-02-28||1|
|Men's Middle Distance Standing||Final||2013-03-01||3|
|Men's Long Distance Standing||Final||2013-03-03||3|
|Men's 7.5 km Standing||Final Round||2014-03-08||2|
|Men's 12.5 km Standing||Final Round||2014-03-11||3|
|Men's 15 km Standing||Final Round||2014-03-14||11|
|Men's 10 km Standing||Final Round||2014-03-16||11|
|Men's Short Distance Standing||Race 1||2015-01-24||6|
|Men's Middle Distance Standing||Race 1||2015-01-27||5|
|Men's Long Distance Standing||Race 1||2015-01-30||11|
|Men's Middle Distance - Classic Standing||Race 1||2015-01-31||4|
|Men's Middle Distance Standing||Final||2017-02-11||1|
|Men's Long Distance Standing||Final||2017-02-14||2|
|Men's Long Distance - Classic Standing||Final||2017-02-16||5|
|Men's Sprint Standing||Final||2017-02-18||1|
|Men's Middle Distance - Free Style Standing||Final||2017-02-19||3|
|Men's 7.5km Standing||Final||2018-03-10||2|
|Men's 12.5km Standing||Final||2018-03-13||3|
|Men's 1.5km Sprint Classic Standing||Final||2018-03-14||3|
|Men's 15km Standing||Final||2018-03-16||1|
|Men's 10km Classic Standing||Final||2018-03-17||3|
|4x2.5km Mixed Relay||Final||2018-03-18||2|
|Men's Middle Distance Standing||Final||2019-02-16||3|
|Men's Middle Distance - Free Style Standing||Final||2019-02-17||2|
|Men's Sprint Standing||Final||2019-02-20||3|
|Men's Long Distance Standing||Final||2019-02-21||2|
|Men's Long Distance - Classic Standing||Final||2019-02-24||2|