Quick Facts

How acquired
Car accident
Physical Impairment – Paraplegia
Date of Birth
October 17, 1979
Penrith, NSW
Started Competing
First Competed for Australia
Games Experience

London 2012, Rio 2016

Career Highlights

Being selected for the Australian team in his first year of competition, winning silver at the London 2012 Paralympic Games and being named the 2014 World Rowing Para Rower of the Year


Erik Horrie’s London 2012 Paralympic Games campaign was one of the most eventful in recent memory. His partner due to give birth any minute, he suffered a seizure the day after his single sculls heat and was admitted to hospital.

Having made a promise to himself years earlier that he would race and win a medal at the Games, Erik was determined to make the final. He recovered to place first in his repechage heat and second overall, incredibly going on to win silver in the ASM1x final.

A man of many talents, Erik first began his sporting career as a wheelchair basketballer playing for the Brisbane Spinning Bullets. Having caught the eye of national selectors, he made his international debut in 2009, winning gold in a World Cup qualifier and at the IWBF Asia-Oceania Championships.

It didn’t take Erik long to rise to the top when he transitioned to rowing in 2011. He won bronze at the FISA World Rowing Championships in Bled, Slovenia that year, and following his success in London, he won gold at the 2013, 2014 and 2015 World Championships.

Returning to the Paralympic stage in 2016, the 2014 World Rowing Para Rower of the Year raced nearly 13 seconds faster than he did in London to win back-to-back silver.

During training he is inspired by boxing legend Muhammad Ali’s ability to redefine the boundaries of his sport. Erik too hopes to create a legacy for emerging athletes to aspire to.

He is currently completing a Certificate IV in Youth Work through a partnership with the New South Wales Institute of Sport in hopes of becoming a counsellor. He would also like to be involved in helping to develop Paralympic talent.

The Penrith local has also tried his hand at Para-triathlon, competing at the first ever Para-triathlon held in Australia in 2013. In his spare time he enjoys handcycling, wheelchair racing and watching motor sports.

Sports & Disciplines

  • Sport: Rowing Disciplines: Single sculls Classification: PR1