In PyeongChang, Norway’s living legend, Ole Einar Bjorndalen, will compete in his seventh Olympic Games. The man they call “The Cannibal” – for his ravenous appetite for victory – or simply “The King,” is the most decorated Winter Olympian in history having won 13 medals, eight of which are gold.
Bjorndalen’s biathlon dominance grew with every Olympics he attended. It hit its peak in 2002 at the Salt Lake City Olympic Games when the Norwegian won gold every time his skis touched the snow and a rifle was on his back.
Crippled by the flu in 2006, Bjorndalen did not have the kind of Olympic encore in Torino most expected the athlete to have. Despite falling ill, he collected two silvers and a bronze in Italy. Returning for Olympic Games #5 in Vancouver, Bjorndalen won relay gold and an individual silver.
In 2014, at 40-years-old, he rewrote the history books in Sochi by winning his seventh gold, and 12th medal overall, in the sprint, tying the record for medals won at a Winter Games set by his hero, Norway’s Bjorn Daehlie. If that were not enough, Bjorndalen claimed another gold in Sochi in the mixed relay, surpassing his hero in the record books.
Getting to know Ole Einar Bjørndalen
Married to Belarus' three-time Sochi Olympic biathlon gold medalist Darya Domracheva
Won gold and silver World Cup medals competing in cross-country skiing
In 2008, a sculpture of Bjorndalen was installed near his childhood home in Simostranda, Norway