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Paralympian Profile

Chris Sharp #206

Chris Sharp, , New Zealand Paralympian with other Rio 2016 Para sailors

Chris Sharp started sailing up though various classes as a young boy. In time his love of the sport led him on to a sailmaking apprenticeship with Chris Bouzaid at Hood Sailmakers. Chris went on to racing Sport Boats, and Flying 15s, until he had a motorbike accident 4 years ago and became a paraplegic. Prior to his accident Chris was an arborist and loved nothing more than hanging from a tree with a chain saw in his hands. When not doing this he was sailing or riding his Ducati Motor bike. 

Chris hadn’t been on a boat since his accident until he met up with Richard Dodson and the Kiwi Gold Sailing team. He had spent the years since his accident as a recluse and when the phone call came the 59 year old was ready to get back into the world and sailing competitively again.

Chris and his crew mates Rick Dodson, a former Team NZ strategist, and Paralympian Andrew May made their Paralympic debut in Rio 2016. They compete in the 3-person keelboat event (Sonar) placing 4th and missing the bronze medal by the narrowest of margins. The crew were part of the New Zealand Paralympic Team that won a stunning 21 medals across 12 individual medallists in 2016 (9 gold, 5 silver and 7 bronze). The Team finished first in the world per capita and 13th in the world overall (previous best: 16th).

Chris officially received his ‘numbered’ Paralympic pin as part of The Celebration Project in Whangarei in May 2019.

Paralympic Results
Paralympic GamesResult
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games
  • 4th - Sonar Class


  • Hometown: Auckland

  • Born: 3 September 1958

  • Eligible Impairment: Loss of muscle power (Paraplegic)

  • Coach: Andrew Brown

  • Classification: Sport Class 4

  • Games Year: Rio 2016

  • Para Sport: Para sailing

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