Stephen Churm

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Quick Facts

Nerve damage - Klumpky palsy
How acquired
Torn brachial plexus during birth
Date of Birth
Fri, 16/07/1954
Como West, NSW
Started Competing
First Competed for Australia
Sailor David Adams
Career Highlights
7th place at 2002 World Championships
Greatest Moment
Sydney 2000 Paralympics -competed in trials and lost by a few seconds to the eventual gold medallists


Having excelled at the recent IFDS 2012 Sailing World Championships, Stephen Churm is looking forward to a long awaited Paralympic Games appearance at London 2012.

Alongside Colin Harrison and Jonathan Harris, Stephen finished fourth at the 2012 World Championships in Florida. A third place finish in their final race left the trio only one point away from a podium finish in a highly promising performance.

Stephen tore his brachial plexus at birth, leaving him with klumpky palsy, a condition very similar to erbs palsy. He developed his passion for sailing through his formative years and it culminated in Stephen debuting for Australia at the 2002 IFDS World Championships in the Netherlands and returning a very respectable seventh place finish. Earlier, Stephen narrowly missed qualification for the Sydney 2000 Games, losing out to the team that eventually won Paralympic gold.

When he isn’t sailing, Stephen likes to draw pencil and acrylic paintings, especially of water scenes. He studied art at school but decided to specialise in landscape gardening. Stephen is qualified in the business and marketing fields and is also an accredited sailing instructor.

While his love for sailing is at an all time high, the Sydney-sider understands sometimes it’s not all smooth sailing. During a race, Stephen fell overboard and due to his injuries, wasn’t able to climb back in.  With two broken ribs, the crew was forced to pull out of the race and needed a sea boat and sea plane to assist. But he doesn’t carry memories such as this into competition, instead preferring not to look at previous results and get a good night’s sleep before competing.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Sailing
Disciplines: Three person sonar