Skier, cyclist, trekker, triathlete, runner, world and Australian
record holder, Paralympian, Olympian....
Michael Milton is one of Australia's best-known athletes. His four-gold-medal haul
at the Salt Lake Winter
Paralympic Games endeared him to a sport-loving nation and earned him the
title of Laureus
World Sportsperson of the Year
with a Disability.
In April 2003 Michael tried something new: speed skiing, the drag racing of alpine sport.
On the steepest slope in the world he clocked over 193km/hr, smashing a 16-year-old world record and becoming
the fastest skier with a disability.
Every year after that he bettered his own world record until, in April
2006, he clocked a staggering 213.65km/hr to also become the fastest
Australian skier ever. Click here to see a list of Michael's record
A month earlier at the 2006 Winter Paralympic Games (in his fifth
Paralympic Games) Michael's ski racing career came to an end. Under a
new, tougher classification system, he won a silver medal in the
Downhill, achieving his goal to "...win a medal, any colour." His ski
racing medal count stands at eleven Paralympic medals (six gold) and
eleven World Championships medals (six gold).
Milton then pursued a new sport: cycling. After six months of intense training,
he not only won a gold medal in the 3000m Individual Pursuit at the
Australian Track Cycling Championships in February 2007 but also broke
the Australian record.
His dream to make the Australian team and compete at the 2008 Beijing
Paralympic Games was sidelined when he was diagnosed with Oesophagael Cancer in July 2007. He then made
an amazing comeback from this serious illness to record times at the 2008
Australian Track Cycling Championships comparable to his results in the
same events 12 months before.
In June 2008 Michael was named as one of 18 athletes in the Paralympic
Cycling Team to compete in Beijing. His sixth Paralympic Games and his
first as a summer athlete, he arrived in Beijing less than 12 months
since chemotherapy radiotherapy and major surgery. In many ways, he'd
already won. Michael competed in three events - the 1km Time Trial and
the 300m Individual Pursuit on the track and the 60.5km Road Race.
Michael has raced in the Mark Webber Challenge, a
five-day adventure race in Tasmania and in the 293km long Coast to Coast Kokoda Challenge. He has
climbed Mt Kilimanjaro and walked Kokoda twice.
He has also competed in triathlon, representing Australia at two World
Paratriathlon Championships, finishing fourth in China in
Michael has also completed a marathon on crutches. Aiming to break the
existing Guinness World Record for Fastest Marathon on Crutches (one leg)
which stood at 6 hours, 42:47, Michael completed the distance in a
time of 5 hours, 23:50. The record is yet to be ratified. Watch his
marathon story here.
In May 2017, Michael will again tackle a distance race - this time the Ultra-Trail Australia
50km race in the Blue Mountains. It's tough terrain when you're running
on crutches and he hopes to finish the course in less than 12 hours.
Michael John Milton
Born: 1973, Canberra
Lives: Canberra, Australia