Brian McKeever won Canada’s first Paralympic gold medal on home soil yesterday, finishing first in the men’s cross country 20-kilometre free visually impaired race by 37 seconds — a wide margin.
“A dominating race is always fun to say,” said McKeever. “We pushed really well, we had a really good plan and that’s what made the difference today.”
The clearly excited athlete also said being able to share the moment with his brother, Robin McKeever, who races with him as his guide, was part of what made the day great.
“It was a lot of fun, we share a lot, and part of the fun is being able to share your experiences, and right away I get to share it with my bro.”
McKeever said his brother played a key part in the golden performance.
“He skied his ass off for me today, he was unbelievably good, and it was a real team effort, without that I don’t know if we would have been able to hold it.”
The McKeevers overcame a cold and a flu to take gold in an event that they finished second both in Salt Lake in 2002 and in Turin in 2006.
“The 20-kilometre is also the race we’ve never won in the Paralympics, so it was a really thrilling and satisfying day to finally get that one,” said McKeever.
The win gives McKeever momentum heading into his next strongest event, the 10-kilometre race on Thursday.
“We want more,” said McKeever.