Brian McKeever

About

Date of birth:
June 18, 1979
Place of birth:
Calgary, AB
Hometown:
Canmore, AB
Club:
Lifesport Ski Team
Coach:
Robin McKeever
Guide:
Graham Nishikawa, Russell Kennedy
Years on Senior National Team:  18
Personal sponsors:
Lifesport, StoneCor, Visa
Equipment:

Skis: Fischer
Poles: One Way
Boots/Bindings: Fischer

 

Background

National Ski Team Background:

Brian McKeever is Canada’s most-decorated winter Paralympian having racked up 17 medals in five trips to the Paralympic Winter Games, including 13 gold. Teaming up with former guide, and brother Robin, Brian has won nearly everything on the table in Para-Nordic skiing. Brian continued his tradition of winning with childhood friend, Erik Carleton, on the road to the 2014 Games. He also added friend, and national team athlete Graham Nishikawa to his team as an additional guide for the Sochi Paralympics. That relationship continues today as Graham, along with Olympian Russell Kennedy, helped guide Brian to three golds and a bronze medal in 2018. In 2010, Brian became the first athlete in the world to be named to the Olympic and Paralympic Teams. While Brian did not start in the Olympic races in Whistler, he went on to win three gold medals at the Paralympics. He is the first athlete to win the Triple Treble – three golds in each of the last three Paralympic Games.

Canada’s Flag Bear for the Opening Ceremonies of the 2018 Paralympics, Brian has worked his way through the national program competing at all levels in both able-bodied and Para-Nordic skiing. Now the most accomplished Winter Paralympian with 17 medals, Brian competed in his first able-bodied World Championships in 2007 where he led the Canadians with a 21st-place finish in Sapporo, Japan. Prior to being diagnosed with Stargaard’s disease in 1998, Brian also represented Canada at the Junior World Championships in Pontresina, Switzerland.

Brian was recognized in 2019 as a nominee for most outstanding athlete with a disability at the prestigious Laureus Sport Awards.

Introduction to Cross-Country Skiing:

Growing up in an active family, Brian began skiing at the early age of three, and entered his first competitive race at age 12. What he enjoys most about skiing is the adrenaline rush he receives when racing or competing. Kaspar Wirz first introduced Brian to the blind skier category of the Para-Nordic ski world.

Personal:

It wasn’t only his father’s influence that shaped Brian’s life, but a rare genetic disease as well. Brian’s father and aunt both have Stargaard’s disease (macular degeneration or loss of central vision – fine detail and colour). Doctor’s had always told Brian that he may get the disease, but both his father and his aunt contracted the disease in elementary school. Brian felt that he may have beat the odds as he grew into his teens.

In 1998, Brian competed in the 1998 World Junior Championships, but by 1999 he was having trouble reading billboards from the car window. He had his eyes checked and was diagnosed with Stargaard’s disease. “The easiest way I can describe the feeling is that if you stared at the sun for a long time and turn away, you get these fuzzy spots. Well for me, the fuzzy spots don’t go away. It’s the loss of central vision. Sort of like a fuzzy blob in the middle of my vision. I always knew it was a possibility. It wasn’t much of a transition because soon after I was diagnosed, the disabled team came knocking.”

Notable Results

Career Highlights:

Winner of 17 Paralympic medals, including 13 gold
Opening Ceremonies Flag Bearer for Team Canada at the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games
Won three gold medals and a bronze at the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games, in PyeongChang, Korea
Won three gold medals at the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia
Won three gold medals at 2010 Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver-Whistler
First athlete in the world to qualify for the Olympic and Paralympic Games in same year
Nominated for Athlete of the Year with a Disability at 2019 Laureus Sport Awards
Won one gold at 2019 IPC World Championships
Won two gold medals at the 2017 Para-Nordic World Championships
Won two gold medals at the 2015 Para-Nordic World Championships
Won two gold medals at 2013 Para-Nordic World Championship
Overall Winner on 2013 IPC Cross-Country Skiing World Cup
Won five gold medals on 2013 IPC World Cup Circuit
Won three gold and one silver at 2011 Para-Nordic World Championships
Races on the World Cup in both the able-bodied and para-nordic circuits
Finished 21st in the 15km free event at the 2007 FIS World Ski Championships in Sapporo, Japan
Four-time gold, silver and bronze medallist at Paralympic Winter Games in Torino, Italy.
First overall in 2004, 2003 and 2002 Disabled World Cup rankings for cross-country skiing – Men’s Blind Category;
Five-time gold medallist at 2003 Disabled World Championships;
Two-time gold and silver medallist at Paralympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City.

Full Results

Paralympic Results:
2018 – Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, Korea: 1 (sprint); 1 (20km F); 1 (10km C); 3 (Open Relay)
2014 – Paralympic Winter Games, Sochi, RUS: 1 (Sprint)
2014 – Paralympic Winter Games, Sochi, RUS: 1 (20km C)
2014 – Paralympic Winter Games, Sochi, RUS: 1 (10km F)
2010 – Paralympic Winter Games, Vancouver-Whistler, B.C.: 1 (Sprint)
2010 – Paralympic Winter Games, Vancouver-Whistler, B.C.: 1 (20km F)
2010 – Paralympic Winter Games, Vancouver-Whistler, B.C.: 1 (10km C)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Torino, Italy: 1 (5km F)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Torino, Italy: 3 (7.5km Biathlon)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Torino, Italy: 1 (10km C)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Torino, Italy: 2 (20km C)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 1 (5 km C)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 1 (10 km F)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 2 (20 km F)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 6 (Biathlon)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Torino, Italy: 2 (20km C)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 1 (5 km C)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 1 (10 km F)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 2 (20 km F)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 6 (Biathlon)

World Championship Results:
2019 – World Para Nordic Ski Championships, Prince George, CAN: 1 (Long Distance Classic)
2017 – IPC World Championships, Finsterau, GER: 1 (Middle Distance Free)
2017 – IPC World Championships, Finsterau, GER: 1 (Long Distance Classic)
2015 – IPC World Championships, Cable, USA: 1 (Middle Distance Classic)
2015 – IPC World Championships, Cable, USA: 1 (Long Distance Classic)
2013 – IPC World Championships, Solleftea, SWE: 1 (Sprint and Long Distance)
2011 – IPC World Championships, Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS: 1 (Middle Distance)
2011 – IPC World Championships, Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS: 1 (Long Distance)
2011 – IPC World Championships, Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS: 1 (Sprint)
2011 – IPC World Championships, Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS: 2 (Biathlon Long)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, Finland: 1 (20km/C)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, Finland: 1 (10km/F)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, Finland: 2 (12.5km/Biathlon Long)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, Finland: 2 (1.2km/Sprint)
2007 – FIS World Ski Championships, Sapporo, JPN: 34 (50km)
2007 – FIS World Ski Championships, Sapporo, JPN: 21 (15km)
2007 – FIS World Ski Championships, Sapporo, JPN: 39 (Pursuit)
2005 – IPC World Championships, Salt Lake City, Utah: 1 (Biathlon 7.5km)
2005 – IPC World Championships, Salt Lake City, Utah: 6 (Biathlon 12.5km)
2005 – IPC World Championships, Salt Lake City, Utah: 1 (10km F)
2005 – IPC World Championships, Salt Lake City, Utah: 1 (Biathlon 5km C)
2005 – IPC World Championships, Salt Lake City, Utah: 1 (Biathlon 20km F)

World Cup Results:
2020 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Lillehammer, NOR: 1 (Short Distance), 2 (Sprint), 2 (Middle Distance)
2020 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Dresden, GER: 2 (Sprint)
2020 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Altenberg, GER: 1 (Short Distance)
2020 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Finsterau, GER: 2 (Middle Distance)
2019 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Sapporo, JPN: 1 (Short Distance Classic)
2019 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Sapporo, JPN: 1 (Middle Distance Classic)
2018 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 2 (Sprint Classic)
2018 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Short Distance Free)
2018 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 2 (Middle Distance Classic)
2018 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Obberied, GER: 2 (Long Distance Free)
2018 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Oberried, GER: 1 (Middle Distance Classic)
2018 – Para-Nordic World Cup, Oberried, GER: 1 (Sprint Free)
2017 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Sprint Classic)
2016 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Long Distance Classic)
2016 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Middle Distance Free)
2015 – IPC World Cup, Asahikawa, JPN: 1 (Long Distance Free)
2014 – IPC World Cup, Canmore, CAN: 1 (Middle Distance, Long Distance)
2014 – IPC World Cup, Oberstdorf, GER: 1 (Middle Distance and Long Distance)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Cable, USA: 1 (Sprint, Middle Distance, Long Distance)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Sochi, RUS: 1 (Sprint and Long Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Sjusjoen, NOR: 1 (Sprint)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Sjusjoen, NOR: 1 (Middle Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Sjusjoen, NOR: 2 (Long Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Middle Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Long Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Sprint)
2009 – IPC World Cup, Whistler, BC: 1 (1.24km/Sprint)
2009 – IPC World Cup, Whistler, BC: 1 (10km/C)
2008 – IPC World Cup Finals, Nes, NOR: 1 (Sprint)
2008 – IPC World Cup Finals, Nes, NOR: 1 (7.5km Biathlon)
2008 – IPC World Cup Finals, Nes, NOR: 1 (Pursuit)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (20km)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (10km)
2006 – IPC World Cup, Lillehammer, NOR: 1 (5km C)
2006 – IPC World Cup, Lillehammer, NOR: 3 (20km F)
2006 – IPC World Cup, Lillehammer, NOR: 1 (Sprint)
2005 – IPC World Cup Lillehammer, NOR: 1 (5km)
2005 – IPC World Cup Lillehammer, NOR: 3 (20km)
2004 – IPC World Cup, Tannheim, Germany: 1 (10 km C)
2004 – IPC World Cup, Tannheim, Germany: 1 (10 km F)
2004 – IPC World Cup, Tannheim, Germany: 1 (Sprint)
2004 – IPC World Cup, Mont Orford, Que.: 1 (5 km F)
2004 – IPC World Cup, Mont Orford, Que.: 1 (20 km F)
2004 – IPC World Cup, Mont Orford, Que.: 1 (Sprint)

National Results:
2013 – Haywood Ski Nationals, Whistler, B.C.: 1 (10km F)
2013 – Haywood Ski Nationals, Whistler, B.C.: 3 (50km F)
2007 – Haywood NorAm Cup, Canmore, Alta.: 2 (Pursuit)
2005 – Haywood Ski Nationals, Prince George, B.C.: 2 (Sprint)
2005 – Haywood Ski Nationals, Prince George, B.C.: 3 (Pursuit)
2005 – Haywood Ski Nationals, Prince George, B.C.: 4 (10km C)