Australia at the winter olympics

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Australia first competed at the Winter Olympics in 1936, when its sole representative, Kenneth Kennedy, competed in speed skating. Australia did not send a team to the 1948 Winter Olympics, but has competed at every Winter Olympics since, sending nine athletes to the 1952 Olympics.

In 1994, Australia's short track relay team won Australia's first Winter Olympic medal, a bronze, having stuck to their finals plan of staying on their feet, remaining undisqualified and beating at least one of the other three finalists. Zali Steggall won the first individual medal in 1998 with a bronze in slalom skiing.

Steven Bradbury became an instant celebrity when he won Australia's first Winter Olympics gold medal in 2002 after making it to the final of the short course speed skating. Trailing the other 3 finalists they fell leaving the line wide open for Bradbury to cruise over to take the win with the other 3 athletes sprawled on the ice watching him. His iconic win has termed a new phrase in Australia to "do a Bradbury". Later that olympics Alisa Camplin also took gold in the womens Aerials.


Australia at the Winter Olympics
Year Athletes Sports Best result Athlete Event
1936 1 1 29th Kenneth Kennedy 500m speed skating
1940 and 1944 Olympics cancelled, and Australia did not compete in 1948
1952 9 4 10th Adrian Swan Figure skating
1956 10 3 7th Colin Hickey 500m speed skating
1960 31 6 12th Mason and Bower Figure skating (pairs)
1964 6 1 27th Christine Smith Downhill
1968 3 3 24th Malcolm Milne Downhill and slalom
1972 4 2 18th Colin Coates 10000m speed skating
1976 8 3 6th Colin Coates 10000m speed skating
1980 10 4 17th Jacqui Cowderoy Slalom
1984 11 5 19th Steven Lee Downhill
1988 18 6 10th Danny Kah 5000m speed skating
1992 23 9 7th Relay team 5000m short track relay
1994 27 9 3rd Relay team 5000m short track relay
1998 24 8 3rd Zali Steggall Slalom
2002 27 5 1st Steven Bradbury 1000m short track
1st Alisa Camplin Aerials
2006 40 10 1st Dale Begg-Smith Moguls

Australian medals at the Winter Olympics
Year Athletes Sports  Gold   Silver Bronze Total 
1994 27 9 0 0 1 1
1998 24 8 0 0 1 1
2002 27 5 2 0 0 2
2006 40 10 1 0 1 2

Australia at the Winter Paralympics

Australia has competed in every Winter Paralympics, which began in 1976, and won its first Winter Paralympic medals in 1992, and has been in the medal tally of every Paralympics since. All of the medals have been in alpine skiing.

Australia won four Winter Paralympic medals in 1992 - one gold, a silver and two bronze. Michael Milton, an amputee alpine skier, won gold in slalom and silver in super-G. David Munk, a paraplegic sit-skier, won bronze in super-G. Michael Norton, a paraplegic sit-skier, won bronze in the downhill.

In 1994, Australia won 9 Paralympic medals, 3 gold, 2 silver and 4 bronze. Milton won gold in giant slalom, silver in slalom and bronze in downhill and super-G. Norton won gold in slalom and super-G. James Paterson, a skier with cerebral palsy, won silver in downhill and bronze in giant slalom. Munk won bronze in giant slalom. Different disabilities have separate events, which is why Paterson and Munk both won bronze in giant slalom. In 1998, 2 medals were won, both by Paterson: gold in downhill and bronze in slalom.

In 2002, the medal haul was 7, consisting of 6 gold and one silver. Milton made a clean sweep, winning gold in downhill, super-G, giant slalom and slalom. Bart Bunting, a vision-impaired skier guided by Nathan Chivers, won gold in downhill and super-G, and silver in giant slalom.

In 2006, Australia sent its first female Winter Paralympian, Emily Jansen, a below-knee amputee skier. James Millar, who was born without his right forearm, was Australia's first Paralympic cross-country skier since Peter Rickards in 1980. Millar also competed in biathlon. Milton attended his last Paralympics. A target of two medals was set, which took into account the consolidation of disability classes. Australia met this target, with Milton winning silver in downhill and Toby Kane winning bronze in super-G.