Currently one of Australia’s best Paralympic alpine skiers, Geelong’s Mitchell Gourley was primed for success at his second Paralympic Games in Sochi, having been the most successful Australian winter athlete during the 2012/13 World Cup series, where he collected four medals including one gold and three silvers.
The 2013/14 season had appeared even more fruitful with Mitchell bagging two gold, three silver and one bronze medal however fate had a different idea for 22-year-old in Sochi. With a number of disappointing results for the Australian including two DNFs in the super-G and slalom, he put all that he’d learnt in Sochi to the test in his final event, the giant slalom. As the world number one in the event, he was a favourite to win a medal and was on track, until he crashed just metres from the finish line, dashing his hopes of a Paralympic medal in Sochi.
Mitchell began competing in winter sport at just 11-years-old and represented Australia for the first time at 15. Having been with the team for his entire adult life, he now plans to have some time away from the sport to enjoy with his family and friends and some warmer weather.
Outside of skiing, Mitchell also enjoys cycling, mountain biking, drinking coffee and searching for Melbourne’s best hamburger. In his spare time, he likes to read and cites the character Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird as someone he admires.