Paralympic Winter Games
04 - 13 March

Jesper Pedersen leaves Beijing as Games' most successful Paralympian

Giacomo Bertagnolli and Arthur Bauchet also emerge triumphant on final day of Para Alpine Skiing competition 13 Mar 2022
Jesper Pedersen celebrates after winning another gold in Beijing
Norwegian Para Alpine skier Jesper Pedersen secured four golds and one silver in Beijing
ⒸGetty Images
By OIS and IPC

Jesper Pedersen became the most successful Paralympian at Beijing 2022 by winning his fourth gold medal on the final day of Para Alpine Skiing competition (13 March) at the Yangqing National Alpine Skiing Centre.

The Norwegian won the men's slalom sitting with a time of 1:31.10, finishing ahead of Netherlands' Niels de Langen (1:37.18) and Italian Rene de Silvestro (1:38.44).

Pedersen had previously taken the top spot in the giant slalom, super-G and super combined, and silver in the downhill. USA's Para Nordic skier Oksana Masters rounded up her performance with seven medals overall but one less gold than Pedersen.

"I exceeded all expectations. Of course this is what I've been dreaming for the last couple of years, but to be able to have such good events here and in Hafjell (2022 World Championships) as well, it's been just amazing for me," said 22-year-old Pedersen.

"I'm just so happy and now I'm ready to go home and take a well-deserved rest."

The 22-year-old shared he skied in memory of his later father Bjorn, who passed away in November 2020. 

"I've had him (his photos) on my sit ski for the last races. He's always with me in my memory. I wouldn't be where I am today without him so he's a big part of who I am today.

"He took me out skiing for the first time when I was two years old. I don't think there are many parents who would have done that with their two-year-old spina bifida child, so I've been really lucky and I want to honour him in the best way possible and to take four gold medals here is a good way to do that."

Looking ahead to Milano Cortina 2026, Pedersen added: "I think Cortina will be really fun. Four years is a long time, but I'm ready to give it all there as well."

France's 21-year-old Arthur Bauchet took the men's slalom standing gold, his third at Beijing 2022. "It feels crazy, amazing. It feels really good.

"It was very hard today. The coach told me on the radio, 'It will be hard, but even if you are collapsing, continue, it's not a big problem'.

"And I told myself, 'Listen to your coach, go forward', and at the finish, when I turned my head, I saw my name at the top of the scoreboard. That was a spectacular moment and a great pride.

"Since PyeongChang (2018), I'm training for Beijing 2022, so it's four years of hard work to arrive here. To go back home with three gold, it's just crazy."

Italian 23-year-old Giacomo Bertagnolli, guided by Andrea Ravelli, took his second gold in the vision impaired.

“It’s amazing. I didn’t expect it. It was very hard to get to the bottom and finish the race, but I’m super happy because I have improved since the last Paralympics in PyeongChang.

"There, I had one bronze, one silver and two gold, and here in Beijing we got two gold and two silver, so it means we improved. We have to keep training and getting better for Milano Cortina.”

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