KEVIN CHEN

 

February 19, 2014

Four years ago, he made history in Vancouver. In Sochi, four years later, he did it again. Alexandre Bilodeau, the first Canadian to win a gold medal at an Olympic Games held in Canada, became the first person in history to defend his Olympic title in any freestyle skiing event at the Sochi Olympics on February 10th.

For much of the World Cup season, Bilodeau had fierce competition from his Canadian teammate Mikael Kingsbury. At the 2013 Freestyle World Ski Championships, Bilodeau had actually placed second behind Kingsbury.  Their rivalry continued at the 2014 Winter Olympics where Kingsbury led the battle between the duo until the final run, when he made a few slight errors. Bilodeau’s final run was perfect and he managed to win the gold medal in men’s moguls, while Kingsbury won the silver medal.

Bilodeau, who planned to retire after this World Cup season, had a very successful skiing career. In 2006, he finished 12th at the Winter Olympics in Turin but later in the World Cup season, he won the World Cup moguls event and became the youngest athlete to win that title. In 2006, he won the International Ski Federation rookie of the year title. His gold medal victory at the 2010 Winter Olympics elicited celebrations across Canada. Bilodeau had also won three consecutive gold medals at the Freestyle World Championships in 2009, 2011, and 2013 in the men’s dual moguls event.

In between the Winter Olympics in 2010 and 2013, Bilodeau took a year off from competitions in 2012 to concentrate on his accounting degree, the career he wishes to pursue after he retires.

Born in Montreal, Bilodeau was an avid hockey player as a child. He turned to moguls because his idol Jean-Luc Brassard won Olympic gold in moguls at the 1994 Winter Olympics.  He also cited his brother Frederic as an inspiration for him.

Alexandre Bilodeau is a talented freestyle skier and a great role model who helped inspire a new generation of skiers. He said that he can retire with a sense of accomplishment.

“Everything that I’ve been working on for the last four years fell into place at the right moment. I’ve done what I could do in the sport and I need to see if I can do something else in life,” said Bilodeau.