Eddie Edwards, also known as Eddie ‘the Eagle’, is a British skier and Olympic speaker who was the first Briton to compete in the Olympic ski jumping challenge.
Born in Gloucestershire, Edwards made his first attempt to join the British Olympic team in 1984, narrowly missing out on a place on the downhill skiing team.
Resilient Eddie did not give up on his dream. Instead, he moved to the US and continued his training as a downhill skier, however, a lack of funding quickly put an end to his dream.
Realising that there were no other British contestants for Olympic ski jumping, Eddie decided to pursue the ski jump event, making him the only possible GB candidate for the ’88 Games.
Eddie first represented Great Britain at the 1987 World Championships and ranked 55th in the world. He rapidly caught the attention of the British public during the 1988 Olympic Games.
By the end of the Games, he was the best ski jumper in the UK, holding the record at 73.5 metres. However, this was the highlight of Edwards’s appearance at Calgary, as he was otherwise largely unsuccessful, finishing last in both the 70m and 90m events.