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PEDERSEN Jesper
Sport Para alpine skiing
NPC Norway   
GenderMen
Age23
Place of BirthBergen, NOR
Height1.75 m
Human Interest
Impairment Information
Type of Impairment
Spinal Cord Injuries
Origin of Impairment
Congenital
Classification
LW11
Further Personal Information
Residence
Oslo, NOR
Occupation
Athlete
Languages
English, German, Norwegian, Spanish
Higher education
Political Science - University of Oslo: Norway
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
He first tried skiing in 2001 with his father in Norway, and began skiing alone in 2007 in Beitostolen, Norway.
Why this sport?
"Alpine skiing has been a big part of my life for as long as I can remember, and for me it came kind of naturally to want to see how good I could get. When I'm skiing I feel free and I'm able to do the same things as my friends. I also [enjoy] going fast down hills and competing."
Club / Team
Plogen IL: Norway
Name of coach
Hans Blattmann [national], NOR; Synne Sofie Stangeland [national]
Senior International Debut
Year
2014
Competing for
Norway
Location
Landgraaf, NED
General Interest
Hobbies
Athletics, cycling. (skiforbundet.no, 01 Mar 2020)
Most influential person in career
His father. (Athlete, 05 Mar 2018)
Hero / Idol
Norwegian alpine skier Aksel Lund Svindal. (Athlete, 05 Mar 2018)
Injuries
In 2018 he was affected by a heart infection and was unable to ski for six months. He returned to competition in January 2019. (paralympic.org, 22 Mar 2019, 10 Dec 2018; nrk.no, 03 Jul 2018)
Superstitions / Rituals / Beliefs
He always goes through the course with his coach before the start of the race. (Athlete, 22 Jun 2016)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"With enough training, you can do anything." (paralympic.org, 10 Dec 2018)
Awards and honours
In 2018 he received the Paralympic Honour Award from the Norwegian government. He was also presented with the Gold Medal Honour by the Norwegian Ski Federation. (regjeringen.no, 07 Jun 2018; langrenn.com, 04 Jun 2018)
Other sports
He has competed in Para athletics for the Akra IL club in Norway. (skiforbundet.no, 2016)
Milestones
His four gold medals at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing were the most of any athlete at that edition of the Games. His total haul of five total medals in Beijing took his Paralympic medal count to seven [five gold, one silver, one bronze], drawing him level with Cato Zahl Pedersen as the Norwegian Para alpine skier with the most medals at the Paralympic Winter Games. (SportsDeskOnline, 23 Sep 2022; snl.no, 18 Jul 2022; paralympic.org, 13 Mar 2022)

His tally of nine medals [three gold, four silver, two bronze] is the most of any Para alpine skier representing Norway at the world championships. (SportsDeskOnline, 23 Sep 2022)
Ambitions
To compete at the 2026 Paralympic Winter Games in Milan-Cortina. (paralympic.org, 13 Mar 2022)
Impairment
He was born with spina bifida and is paralysed from the waist down. (tv2.no, 05 Jan 2022; skiforbundet.no, 01 Mar 2020; Athlete, 05 Mar 2018)
Other information
TRIBUTES TO LATE FATHER
His father Bjorn passed away from a heart attack in November 2020, at age 51. In January 2022 Pedersen won gold in sitting downhill at the world championships in Lillehammer, Norway, and dedicated the victory to his late father. He also dedicated his performance at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing, where he won four gold medals, to his father. "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." (paralympic.org, 13 Mar 2022, 15 Jan 2022; vg.no, 14 Jan 2022; tv2.no, 05 Jan 2022)

RAISING AWARENESS
In early 2021 he auctioned five kilograms of cheese that he had received as a prize at a World Cup event in Veysonnaz, Switzerland. His intention was to raise awareness of the difference between what Para alpine skiers and their non-Para counterparts receive for winning races. The cheese was sold to a bidder for 50,000 Norwegian kroner [around 5000 euros]. "It was a stunt, but the response has been incredible. I did it mostly to shed light on the topic. People who were not aware that there was such a great difference now think it is wrong that I do not receive a single kroner while able-bodied skiers can get 600,000 kroner for winning a race. I try to increase awareness of the differences that exist. We need attention so that people will open their eyes to us." (nrk.no, 07 Mar 2021; tv2.no, 04 Feb 2021)

PARALYMPIC SUCCESS
He was Norway's sole gold medallist at the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, claiming victory in the sitting giant slalom. "Nobody knew me when I went to [the Republic of] Korea but when I got back everybody did. The TV coverage from Pyeongchang 2018 was good in Norway so lots of people wanted a chat. It was pretty cool. Everyone knows me in my hometown anyway but now I'm the guy with a gold medal. They think, 'Whoa'." (paralympic.org, 10 Dec 2018)

Competition Highlights (historical)
Paralympic Games
Rank Year Event Result
6 2018 Downhill - Sitting 1:26.82
4 2018 Super-G - Sitting 1:27.10
3 2018 Super Combined - Sitting 2:13.74
1 2018 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:13.45
5 2018 Slalom - Sitting 1:42.29
2 2022 Downhill - Sitting 1:17.99
1 2022 Super-G - Sitting 1:09.69
1 2022 Super Combined - Sitting 1:50.23
1 2022 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:54.20
1 2022 Slalom - Sitting 1:31.10
World Championships
Rank Year Event Result
8 2016/2017 Downhill - Sitting 1:15.79
7 2016/2017 Super-G - Sitting 1:07.24
6 2016/2017 Super Combined - Sitting 1:54.08
  2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting  DNF
5 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting 1:27.13
3 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:12.69
2 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 1:54.80
7 2018/2019 Downhill - Sitting 1:02.70
2 2018/2019 Super Combined - Sitting 1:48.44
3 2018/2019 Super-G - Sitting 1:04.30
1 2021/2022 Downhill - Sitting 1:12.85
2 2021/2022 Super-G - Sitting 1:07.60
2 2021/2022 Super Combined - Sitting 1:53.83
1 2021/2022 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:14.42
1 2021/2022 Slalom - Sitting 1:27.61
World Cup Final
Rank Year Event Result
5 2016/2017 Downhill - Sitting 1:27.79
5 2016/2017 Super-G - Sitting 1:31.15
6 2016/2017 Super-G - Sitting 1:29.14
5 2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:13.85
5 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting 1:36.86
World Cup
Rank Year Event Result
14 2015/2016 Slalom - Sitting  
13 2016/2017 Downhill - Sitting  
7 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting  
8 2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting  
12 2016/2017 Super-G - Sitting  
1 2017/2018 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:01.50
1 2017/2018 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:00.61
1 2017/2018 Slalom - Sitting 1:43.43
3 2017/2018 Slalom - Sitting 1:50.53
5 2017/2018 Slalom - Sitting 1:56.94
4 2017/2018 Slalom - Sitting 1:54.54
1 2017/2018 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:10.74
1 2017/2018 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:19.08
1 2017/2018 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:43.97
  2017/2018 Slalom - Sitting  DNF
7 2017/2018 Downhill - Sitting 1:17.04
5 2017/2018 Downhill - Sitting 1:15.08
2 2017/2018 Super-G - Sitting 1:19.06
5 2017/2018 Downhill - Sitting  
3 2017/2018 Slalom - Sitting  
1 2017/2018 Giant Slalom - Sitting  
2 2017/2018 Super-G - Sitting  
3 2017/2018 Super-G - Sitting 1:18.16
1 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 2:00.05
1 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 1:53.92
3 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:12.69
2 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 1:54.80
7 2018/2019 Downhill - Sitting 1:02.70
3 2018/2019 Super-G - Sitting 1:04.30
1 2018/2019 Super-G - Sitting 1:09.03
1 2018/2019 Super-G - Sitting 1:08.57
2 2018/2019 Super-G - Sitting 1:10.64
2 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:54.36
2 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:53.42
2 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:57.40
4 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:38.46
3 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:42.13
4 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:46.41
1 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 1:40.29
5 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 1:45.29
3 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 1:41.56
1 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting 1:40.83
2 2019/2020 Super-G - Sitting 1:06.18
1 2019/2020 Super-G - Sitting 1:06.46
1 2019/2020 Super-G - Sitting 1:05.75
2 2019/2020 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:56.58
2 2019/2020 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:51.33
1 2019/2020 Slalom - Sitting 1:35.71
1 2019/2020 Slalom - Sitting 1:31.98
1 2019/2020 Slalom - Sitting 1:33.94
2 2019/2020 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:47.66
1 2019/2020 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:51.74
2 2019/2020 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:56.53
2 2019/2020 Slalom - Sitting 1:41.38
1 2019/2020 Downhill - Sitting 1:01.14
1 2019/2020 Downhill - Sitting 1:00.18
  2019/2020 Downhill - Sitting  DNS
1 2019/2020 Downhill - Sitting  
1 2019/2020 Slalom - Sitting  
1 2019/2020 Giant Slalom - Sitting  
1 2019/2020 Super-G - Sitting  
7 2018/2019 Downhill - Sitting  
1 2018/2019 Slalom - Sitting  
2 2018/2019 Giant Slalom - Sitting  
1 2018/2019 Super-G - Sitting  
Kranjska Gora
Rank Year Event Result
7 2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:11.63
7 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting 1:31.83
6 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting 1:43.67
Kühtai
Rank Year Event Result
9 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting 1:52.13
2 2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting 2:05.56
  2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting  DNF
St. Moritz
Rank Year Event Result
  2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting  DNF
7 2016/2017 Giant Slalom - Sitting 1:42.27
9 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting 1:36.58
9 2016/2017 Slalom - Sitting 1:34.85