Colette Bourgonje

Vitals

Date of Birth: January 17, 1962
Place of Birth: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Hometown: Porcupine Plain, Saskatchewan
Club: Sturgeon River Nordic
Coach: Robin McKeever
Wax Technician: Ian Daffern, Bruce Johnson & Laurent Roux
Years on Senior Team: 26
Equipment:
Skis: Fischer
Poles: Swix

Photo Gallery

Background

National Ski Team Background:
Colette Bourgonje is one of Canada’s most recognized Paralympians, having participated in all six Paralympic Winter Games in addition to competing in wheelchair at three Paralympic Summer Games in her phenomenal career where she has collected eight medals. The reigning World Champion in the sit-skiing distance race, Colette captured a silver and bronze medal at the 2010 Paralympics before being recognized at the closing ceremonies as the 2010 recipient of the prestigious Whang Youn Dai Achievement Award at the Vancouver Paralympics, a solid gold medal recognizing individuals who conquer adversities through the pursuit of excellence in sport.
 
Introduction to Cross-Country Skiing:
Hailing from the small town of Porcupine Plain in northeast Saskatchewan, Colette describes herself as having always been involved in sports. Colette tried sit-skiing for the first time in 1991, and was soon winning national championships and world championships.  She has since evolved into one of the world’s most accomplished sit-ski athletes.
 
Personal:
Not many athletes have had a street named after them while still in competition; if you know the area around the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, you might have come across Bourgonje Crescent.  On top of being nominated as Saskatchewan Female Athlete-of-the-Year in 1999 Colette was inducted to the Saskatoon Sport Hall of Fame in 1998 and she was chosen Saskatoon’s Athlete-of-the-Year in 1996.
 
Indeed she competed nationally in cross-country running before a car accident in 1980 left her paralyzed at the mid-back level.  Undeterred by adversity she resumed racing, this time in a wheelchair.  She also became the first graduate of Saskatchewan University’s Physical Education Department who used a wheelchair.  She pursued her goal by studying further to acquire a teaching certificate and worked as an elementary school teacher until choosing to take a leave of absence to train full-time.
 
A proponent of healthy living for everyone, Colette is tireless in promoting physical activity, especially for children, rather than focusing entirely on elite sports.  As an advocate of active living Colette is an ambassador of In Motion, Saskatchewan’s movement to increase physical activity.  “I would tell someone if they want to get the most out of life and really start living, they should try doing something physical - even if it is just a 15 minute walk once a day. Your mind, body and spirit are all enhanced when you exercise.”

Notable Results

Won gold medal in sit-ski distance race at 2011 Para-Nordic World Championships
2010 Recipient of the Whang Youn Dai Achievement Award at Vancouver Paralympics – This solid gold medal is to recognize individuals who conquer adversities through the pursuit of excellence in sport 
Six-time Paralympian (Albertville, Lillehammer, Nagano, Salt Lake City, Torino, Vancouver)
Silver and bronze medallist at 2010 Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver
Double bronze medallist 2006 Parlympic Winter Games in Torino
2005 World Cup Series Sit-Ski Champion
Double silver medallist 1998 Paralympic Winter Games in Nagano
Double silver medallist at 2003 Disabled World Championships
1998 World Cup Series Sit-Ski Champion

Full Results

Paralympic Results:
2010 – Paralympic Winter Games, Whistler, BC: 2 (10 km)
2010 – Paralympic Winter Games, Whistler, BC: 3 (5 km)
2010 – Paralympic Winter Games, Whistler, BC: 10 (1km)
2010 – Paralympic Winter Games, Whistler, BC: 4 (Women’s Team Relay)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Turin, Italy: 3 (5km)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Turin, Italy: 6 (2.5km)
2006 – Paralympic Winter Games, Turin, Italy: 3 (10km)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 4 (2.5 km Sit Ski)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 6 (10 km Sit Ski)
2002 – Paralympic Winter Games, Salt Lake City, USA: 9 (5 km Sit Ski)
1998 – Paralympic Winter Games, Nagano, Japan: 2 (2.5 km Sit Ski)
1998 – Paralympic Winter Games, Nagano, Japan: 2 (5 km Sit Ski)
 
World Championship Results:
2013 – IPC World Championships, Solleftea, SWE: 11 (Middle Distance)
2013 – IPC World Championships, Solleftea, SWE: 8 (Long Distance)
2011 – IPC World Championships, Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS: 13 (Middle Distance)
2011 – IPC World Championships, Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS: 1 (Long Distance)
2011 – IPC World Championships, Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS: 8 (Sprint)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, FIN: 4 (3 x 2.5km/Relay)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, FIN: 4 (10km/C)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, FIN: 4 (5km/F)
2009 – IPC World Championships, Vuokatti, FIN: 3 (1km/Sprint)
2005 – IPC World Championships: 6 (5km)
2005 – IPC World Championships: 3 (2.5km)
2005 – IPC World Championships: 3 (10km)
 
World Cup Results:
2013 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 6 (Middle Distance)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 7 (Middle Distance)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Cable, USA: 2 (Middle Distance)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Cable, USA: 3 (Long Distance)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Cable, USA: 4 (Sprint)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Sochi, RUS: 12 (Sprint)
2013 – IPC World Cup, Sochi, RUS: 6 (Long Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Sjusjoen, NOR: 4 (Sprint)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Sjusjoen, NOR: 3 (Long Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 3 (Middle Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 3 (Long Distance)
2012 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 5 (Sprint)
2009 – IPC World Cup, Whistler, BC: 4 (800m/Sprint)
2009 – IPC World Cup Finals, Mt. Washington, BC: 2 (5km/F)
2009 – IPC World Cup Finals, Mt. Washington, BC: 2 (9km/C)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Isny, GER: 4 (5km)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Isny, GER: 2 (5km)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Isny, GER: 2 (2.5km)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Isny, GER: 4 (10km)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 1 (Sprint)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 2 (5km)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 4 (10km)
2008 – IPC World Cup, Vuokatti, FIN: 4 (Sprint)
2008 – IPC World Cup Finals, Nes, NOR: 4 (Sprint)
2008 – IPC World Cup Finals, Nes, NOR: 4 (Pursuit)
2007 – IPC World Cup, Mt. Washington, B.C.: 1 (Biathlon Sprint)
2007 – IPC World Cup, Mt. Washington, B.C.: 1 (10km)
2007 – IPC World Cup, Mt. Washington, B.C.: 1 (Biathlon 10km)
2007 – IPC World Cup, Mt. Washington, B.C.: 1 (Sprint)
2006 – IPC World Cup, Lillehammer, Norway (2.5km) 4
2006 – IPC World Cup, Lillehammer, Norway (10km) 4
2005 – IPC World Cup, Isny: 1 (15km)
2005 – IPC World Cup, Isny: 1 (sprint)
2005 – IPC World Cup, Switzerland: 1 (5km)
2005 – IPC World Cup, Switzerland: 1 (2.5km)
 
National Results:
2008 – Haywood NorAm, Sovereign Lake, BC: 1 (5km/C)
2008 – Haywood Ski Nationals, Whistler, B.C.: 1 (2.5km, 5km & 7.5km)