Greg Westlake is an ice sledge hockey player going to Sochi for Canada’s Paralympic Team and the captain of Canada’s National Sledge Hockey Team. He was on the 2006 team that won gold in Terino, but in 2010, he found disappointment in a fourth-place finish. In Sochi, he’s determined to go home with nothing less than gold. Here are five (plus!) things you didn’t know about Greg Westlake.
1. He didn’t always love sledge hockey.
“I don’t want to say I hated it, but it was just a lot harder than anticipated. I honestly thought that I would step right in and dominate. I though that I would be a great player and that just wasn’t the case. It requires an entirely different skill set and entirely different muscle groups. Although fundamentally it really is the exact same game as stand-up hockey, I had to retrain a whole bunch of different muscles.”
2. He’s an unofficial Team Canada change-room DJ.
“I run the music in the change room so I’ve got a pretty embarrassing wide range of requests on there, but on game day I tend to gravitate more toward the hard rock and heavy metal stuff. I’m a really big Rage Against the Machine fan. Oh and I also like old-school DMX. I like everything.”
3. He loves to give back.
“I help with the Soldier On program here in Canada, which is a program for wounded military that have come back from overseas injured, just getting them back involved in sport and showing them what else is out there. There’s no reason you can’t have an active lifestyle. And I prefer working with children more than anything. As the kids age, you kind of form a relationship with them to see where they take it and see what they do with [sledge hockey]. I think it’s always important to pay it forward.”
4. He’s a romantic who wouldn’t pass up the chance to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
“I would definitely plan a massive romantic gesture.”
5. He holds a world record in hand-biking.
“I set the world speed record for fastest hand-biker ever. I knew the guys who had built this bike, and they had built it for a guy with a very similar body type to mine, and then that person ended up getting injured. So I stepped in, and I just really ended up falling in love with it.”
Bonus: If he weren’t playing sledge hockey, he’d be a huge movie star.
“I’m still waiting to be discovered. That’s not over yet.”
Oh, and did we mention he’s kind of hilarious?
more about Greg Westlake
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