Dave Irwin made ski history in December, 1975, when he ended the one and a half year reign of Austria's Franz Klammer by winning the World Cup Downhill at Schladming, Austria. Dave's 1.61 second win remains the largest margin of victory by a Canadian in a World Cup Downhill event.
Dave's aggressive style and total commitment to competition prompted Swiss journalist Serge Lang, founder of World Cup Skiing, to coin the nickname "Crazy Canuck" in the finish corral following Dave's run on Switzerland's Wengen Lauberhorn Downhill, January 10, 1976. Canada's "Crazy Canucks" took the top spots from the previously European-dominated World Cup downhill ski racing roster. Together with team-mates Ken Read, Steve Podborski, Jim Hunter and the late Dave Murray, Dave Irwin became a Canadian ski icon.
At the age of seventeen, Dave began his illustrious eleven year career on Canada's National Ski Team, spanning 1971 to 1982. He is a two-time Olympian, finishing eighth in 1976 at Innsbruck Austria and eleventh at Lake Placid USA in 1980. Later that year, Dave won the North American Downhill championship at Squaw Valley, California. In 1982, Dave placed third in the Molson World Cup Downhill championships in Whistler. His many skiing successes earned him induction into five Canadian Sports Halls of Fame.
Today, Dave is Chairman of the Dave Irwin Foundation for Brain Injury, and President of Mountain Image Distributors Ltd., a company specializing in sales of corporate and custom imprinted promotional products. Dave has two children Caitlin and Dean, and lives in Canmore, Alberta with his fiancé Lynne Harrison.
For more about Dave's story see the The Fifth Estate