Imagen
a male Para sit skier punches the air

Martin Fleig

Nordic Skiing
1

Martin Fleig is hoping to defend his two world titles in the men’s biathlon middle and long distance sitting at Prince George 2019.

The German showed good signs at the beginning of the 2018/19 season, taking one silver and two bronze in biathlon, and one bronze in cross-country skiing across two World Cups.

The 2017-18 season was no ordinary milestone in his career. Fleig claimed his first Winter Paralympic medal, gold in the men’s biathlon long distance sitting. It was one of Germany’s seven titles at PyeongChang 2018.

Two years ago, he got the chance to compete at his home World Championships in Finsterau, Germany, with the crowd carrying him to his first world titles - two biathlon golds and one bronze as well as bronze in cross-country long distance.

He not only claimed his first world titles, but also finished top of the biathlon World Cup overall rankings, helped by two victories at the PyeongChang 2018 Test Event.

It will not be easy for Fleig to repeat such performances in Prince George, Canada, as the field gets more competitive.

Fleig began skiing at the age of nine and started competing just two years later at the tender age of 11. His senior international debut for Germany came in 2006.

Biography

Impairment information

Origin of Impairment
Congenital
Classification
LW11.5

Further personal information

Family
Wife Stefanie Fleig
Residence
Gundelfingen, GER
Occupation
Office Worker, Public Servant
Languages
English, German

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He took up the sport at about age eight in Fischbachau, Germany, and began competing at age 11.
Why this sport?
He was spotted by a talent scout while he was attending swimming classes. He was initially disheartened by the sport, but his mother encouraged him to keep practising and at age 11 he started to take it more seriously. "I like taking on challenges and staying fit."
Club / Team
Ring der Korperbehinderten Freiburg: Germany
Name of coach
Ralf Rombach [national], GER; Ulrich Zipfel [national], GER

International debut

Year
2006
Competing for
Germany
Tournament
World Cup

General interest

Nicknames
Marty (Instagram profile, 20 Dec 2018)
Hobbies
Photography. (Athlete, 02 Mar 2022)
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning four medals [two gold, two bronze] at the 2017 World Championships in Finsterau, Germany. (Athlete, 02 Mar 2022)
Most influential person in career
His wife, his parents, and coaches Manfred Rauscher, Melanie Kirchner, Michael Huhn, and Ralf Rombach. (Athlete, 02 Mar 2022)
Hero / Idol
French biathlete Martin Fourcade, German biathletes Laura Dahlmeier and Magdalena Neuner. (Athlete, 02 Mar 2022)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Be better than yesterday." (Athlete, 02 Mar 2022)
Awards and honours
He and alpine skier Anna-Lena Forster were flag bearers for Germany at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing. (IPC Entries, 04 Mar 2022)

He was named the 2019 Sportsman of the Year in Freiburg, Germany. He also won the award in 2012. (osp-freiburg.de, 18 Mar 2021; regiotrends.de, 03 Mar 2013)

In 2018 he was named Male Para Athlete of the Year by the German Paralympic Committee [DBS]. (paralympic.org, 26 Nov 2018)
Other sports
He competed in cross-country skiing and biathlon at the Paralympic Winter Games in 2014 and 2018. (SportsDeskOnline, 02 Jan 2019)
Impairment
He was born with spina bifida, and was affected by hydrocephalus [fluid on the brain]. (nordski.net, 2015)
Other information
MOVING OUT
In 2019 he left his parents' home and began living alone for the first time. "I will have my own flat to live in. That could be a very big deal for me I guess, because I will have to manage the daily training, job and household things all by myself. I am really excited to see how that will work." (paralympic.org, 10 Dec 2018)

OCCUPATION
He has worked as a clerk at the Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald district office in Germany. (Athlete, 02 Mar 2022; drs.org, 13 Feb 2019)

Results

Unit Date Rank
IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships Solleftea (Solleftea, Sweden)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Sprint - Classic Sitting Final 2013-02-25 7
Men's Short Distance Sitting Final 2013-02-28 13
Men's Middle Distance Sitting Final 2013-03-01 9
Men's Long Distance Sitting Final 2013-03-03 19
Men's Middle Distance - Classic Sitting Final 2013-03-05 16
Paralympic Winter Games 2014 (Sochi, Russia)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 7.5 km Sitting Final Round 2014-03-08 9
Men's 12.5 km Sitting Final Round 2014-03-11 9
Men's 1 km Sprint Sitting Semifinal 2014-03-12 11
Men's 15 km Sitting Final Round 2014-03-14 8
Men's 10 km Sitting Final Round 2014-03-16 8
2015 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships Cable (Cable, United States of America)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Short Distance Sitting Race 1 2015-01-24 8
Men's Middle Distance Sitting Race 1 2015-01-27 3
Men's Sprint - Classic Sitting Race 1 2015-01-28 7
Men's Long Distance Sitting Race 1 2015-01-30 13
Men's Middle Distance - Classic Sitting Race 1 2015-01-31 4
Open Relay Final 2015-02-01 6
2017 IPC Nordic skiing World Championships Finsterau, GER (Finsterau, Germany)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Middle Distance Sitting Final 2017-02-11 1
Men's Sprint - Free Style Sitting Final 2017-02-12 11
Men's Long Distance Sitting Final 2017-02-14 1
Men's Long Distance - Classic Sitting Final 2017-02-16 3
Men's Sprint Sitting Final 2017-02-18 3
Men's Middle Distance - Free Style Sitting Final 2017-02-19 5
Pyeongchang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games (Pyeongchang, South Korea)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 7.5km Sitting Final 2018-03-10 6
Men's 12.5km Sitting Final 2018-03-13 4
Men's 15km Sitting Final 2018-03-16 1
Men's 7.5km Sitting Final 2018-03-17 7
4x2.5km Open Relay Final 2018-03-18 7
Prince George 2019 World Para Nordic Skiing Championships (Prince George, Canada)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Middle Distance Sitting Final 2019-02-16 4
Men's Middle Distance - Free Style Sitting Final 2019-02-17 1
Men's Sprint Sitting Final 2019-02-20 2
Men's Long Distance Sitting Final 2019-02-21 2
Open Relay Final 2019-02-23 4
Men's Long Distance - Classic Sitting Final 2019-02-24 1