Team captain Greg Westlake is preparing for the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games as a reigning world champion.
At the 2017 World Para Ice Hockey Championships in Gangneung, South Korea in April 2017, Westlake, a forward, helped Canada defeat arch-rivals USA to win a record fourth world title for the Canadians. The win marked Westlake’s third world championship gold: he was on teams that won in 2008, 2013 and 2017.
Westlake competed at his third Paralympic Games in 2014, in Sochi, and collected a second career Paralympic medal as Canada won the bronze. Westlake finished the Sochi Paralympic Games tournament with four points in five games, including an assist on Billy Bridges’ insurance goal in the bronze medal game 3-0 victory over Norway.
Westlake first made Canada’s National Sledge Team in 2003 and has been a major force on the squad ever since. He’s played in seven IPC World Championships and three Paralympic Games.
At the 2013 IPC World Championships, Westlake was named Best Forward in the A Pool. He earned five goals and three assists at the tournament as Canada won its first world crown since 2008. At the 2008 worlds, he collected six goals and nine assists for 15 points in six games. Westlake scored the game-winning goal with just eight seconds to go to defeat Norway in the gold medal showdown.
Westlake’s Paralympic Games appearances are the highlights of his career so far. Canada took gold at the 2006 Games in Turin and while the fourth place at Vancouver 2010 was disappointing, Westlake, like the rest of his teammates, was thrilled to play on the sport’s biggest stage at home. He was named captain of Canada’s National Sledge Team in October 2010.
In addition to Para ice hockey, Westlake is developing a successful career as a broadcaster. He worked as a reporter for CBC at the Toronto 2015 Parapan American Games and the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio.
Westlake had both legs amputated below the knee at age 18 months. When he was born his feet were malformed and were never going to be fully functional. The technical term is congenital bilateral below knee amputee. He began playing Para ice hockey with the Mississauga Cruisers in 2001 and made his debut in 2003 with Team Canada at age 17.