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Dave Irwin

Biographical information

TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameDavid Benjamin "Dave"•Irwin
Used nameDave•Irwin
Born12 July 1954 in Thunder Bay, Ontario (CAN)
Measurements172 cm / 67 kg
NOC Canada


The son of 1948 Olympian and Canadian Ski Hall of Fame member Bill Irwin, Dave Irwin grew up near his father’s newly-founded Loch Lomond Ski Area and Club and, by only 18 months, was already taking his first steps towards skiing. He gained a reputation all his own, however, during the 1970s and the 1980s as a member of the Crazy Canucks, a group of Canadians who rose to prominence during that era with reputations as fast and reckless skiers. Known for his spectacular falls as much as his talents, he competed at the 1976 and 1980 Winter Olympics in the alpine downhill event, placing eighth and eleventh respectively. His lone World Cup win came in 1975 in a downhill event that was (and continued to be for many years) dominated by Austrian Franz Klammer. He retired from active competition in 1981, but continued to ski for the next two decades until a crash in March 2001 left him in a coma for two weeks and with a brain injury for the rest of his life. His survival and recovery (although he continues to suffer from short-term memory problems) led him to found the Dave Irwin Foundation for Brain Injury in the hopes of raising both research funding and awareness for the problem. In 2010 he helped carry the Olympic torch as it made its way to the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1976 Winter Olympics Alpine Skiing (Skiing) CAN Dave Irwin
Downhill, Men (Olympic) 8
1980 Winter Olympics Alpine Skiing (Skiing) CAN Dave Irwin
Downhill, Men (Olympic) 11

Other participations

Games Role NOC As
1976 Winter Olympics Flagbearer at the Opening Ceremony CAN Dave Irwin

Olympic family relations