Rosa Khutor: Alex Bilodeau may be a double Olympic moguls winner but says his disabled brother would be a four-time champion if medals were given out for courage.
The 26-year-old became the first moguls skier to become a multiple Olympic champion when he edged out compatriot Mikael Kingsbury for the gold on Monday.
Canada’s Alex Bilodeau (left) celebrates his gold medal with his brother Frederic in Sochi. PIC/AFP
And while he said Kingsbury’s fierce competition keeps him motivated on the slope, it is his older brother Frederic, a cerebral palsy sufferer, who inspires him in all other walks of life.
“When I’m on the hill (Kingsbury) is in my mind and he’s pushing me to be a better skier, but outside of the hill, whether I’m in university or training or whatever I do in life, my brother is my everyday inspiration,” he said.
“Just like you or I, he has dreams and most of them are not realisable to him but he does dream about it, he talks about it and he never complains that it’s not realistic to him.
‘I feel lucky’
“Everyday I feel very lucky to be a normal person that has the chance to go after his dreams, and he doesn’t have that chance.
“So out of respect to him, I need to go after that and with his motivation he would be four-time Olympic champion.
“It’s crazy the motivation that he takes and every step is very hard for him. In life, I have an easy path and I need to go out there and do the best I can just out of respect to him.
“He lives his dreams through me. (Two gold medals) is the least I can do, he’s my everyday inspiration.”
Frederic Bilodeau was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at a young age and told he would not be able to walk beyond the age of 12, yet more than 15 years later he is still able to do so.
After winning the moguls competition, Alex Bilodeau went over to embrace his brother and brought him over a security fence to be with him.
Although Frederic briefly slipped over, his brother lifted him back onto his feet.
As well as two Olympic gold medals, Bilodeau won three world championship golds in dual moguls, although he was never able to become individual champ, settling twice for silver.