Ski jumper Espen Bredesen, born and raised in Oslo, had his national breakthrough in 1991, when he was Norwegian champion in both normal and big hill. But his first Olympic Games, Albertville 1992, was a disaster for Bredesen. He had just changed his technique from classical to V-style, and ended up last on the normal hill and next-to-last on the big hill. But Bredesen came back strongly. At the 1993 World Championships in Falun he won on the big hill, in addition to winning another gold in the team event. He ended the season with three victories in the World Cup. His success continued in 1994, winning the opening World Cup event in Planica, after which he was the overall winner of the Four Hills Tournament, climbing to the top of the rostrum both at Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Bischofshofen. At the 1994 Lillehammer Games, Bredesen won gold on the normal hill in addition to a silver medal on the big hill. He was the overall World Cup winner in 1994, the peak of his career. He produced a world record when he jumped 209 m at Planica in March 1994, which he surpassed three years later, jumping 210 m again in Planica.
In the autumn 1994 Bredesen had a severe neck injury during trampoline training, and this injury affected him for the rest of his career. His last World Cup win came at Falun in 1995. He won nine national championships titles in the period 1991-98, and ended his career by placing 19th in the 2000 Norwegian championships on the normal hill. Bredesen later worked as an expert ski jumping commentator for Norwegian TV.