Sara Renner

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Sara Renner
RENNER Sara Tour de Ski 2010.jpg
Full name Sara Renner
Born (1976-04-10) 10 April 1976 (age 42)
Golden, British Columbia, Canada
Height 5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)
Ski club Canmore Nordic Ski Club
World Cup career
Seasons 1996-2010
Individual wins 0
Indiv. podiums 4

Sara Renner (born April 10, 1976) is a Canadian cross-country skier who competed from 1994 to 2010. With Beckie Scott, she won the silver medal in the team sprint event at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin and earned her best individual finish of 8th in the 10 km classical event in those same games. She was born in Golden, British Columbia.

Notable placings[edit]

2006 Winter Olympics[edit]

With Beckie Scott (left) at the 2006 Winter Olympics

Norwegian coach Bjørnar Håkensmoen gave Sara Renner a ski pole after hers was broken when a competitor stepped on it during the cross-country team sprint at the 2006 Winter Olympics. Norway's athlete ended up fourth, implying that this selfless act of sportsmanship may well have cost the Norwegian team a medal.[1][2] Renner gave Håkensmoen a bottle of wine as a thank you,[3] while other Canadians responded with phone calls and letters to the Norwegian Embassy and sent 7,400 cans of maple syrup to Håkensmoen.[4] The incident was immortalized in a 2010 Winter Olympics television commercial.[5]

2010 Winter Olympics[edit]

Renner took part in four events: Ladies' Team Sprint Free, placing 7th out of 10 teams, with 18:51.8 Ladies' Individual Sprint Classic, placed 34th of 54 in the qualification (Not Qualified, 30 best results advancing) Ladies' 15 km Pursuit (7.5Classic+7.5Free), placing 10th of 62 finishers, with 41:37.9, her best result. Ladies' 30 km, Mass Start, Classic placing 16th of 50 starters, with 1:34:04.2


She announced her retirement in Vancouver following her finish in the Ladies' 30 km, Mass Start event. She said: "I just left everything out there today," Renner said after carrying her three-year-old daughter, Aria, in her arms through a series of TV interviews. "It was a beautiful race in the pouring rain — quite the way to go out. To hear everyone cheering for me, it was absolutely inspiring."[6]

World Cup results[edit]

All results are sourced from the International Ski Federation (FIS).[7]

Individual podiums[edit]

  • 4 podiums – (4 WC)
No. Season Date Location Race Level Place
1  2005–06  11 December 2005 Canada Vernon, Canada 1.3 km Sprint F World Cup 3rd
2 5 February 2006 Switzerland Davos, Switzerland 10 km Individual C World Cup 2nd
3 7 March 2006 Sweden Borlänge, Sweden 0.75 km Sprint F World Cup 3rd
4  2009–10  6 February 2010 Canada Canmore, Canada 1.45 km Sprint C World Cup 3rd

Team podiums[edit]

  • 2 podiums – (1 RL, 1 TS)
No. Season Date Location Race Level Place Teammate(s)
1  2000–01  13 January 2001 United States Soldier Hollow, United States 4 x 5 km Relay M World Cup 2nd Thériault / Scott / Fortier
2  2005–06  18 December 2005 Canada Canmore, Canada 6 x 1.2 km Team Sprint C World Cup 2nd Scott

Personal life[edit]

Renner grew up at remote Mount Assiniboine Lodge, the oldest backcountry ski lodge in the Canadian Rockies, located southwest of Banff and Canmore, Alberta, just across the British Columbia provincial border. Her parents ran the high-altitide lodge for three decades, and she credits her youth there for her skiing success.[8]

In 2001 Renner posed nude in a calendar called "Nordic Nudes" to help raise money for the Canadian women's Nordic ski team. Teammates Beckie Scott, Milaine Thériault, Jaime Fortier and sister Amanda Fortier also posed nude for the calendar.[6]

Renner is married to retired Italian-Canadian alpine skier Thomas Grandi. Grandi had family support out for himself and his wife during the Turin Olympics.

On September 18, 2006, Renner announced that she was taking the year off to have a baby with husband Thomas Grandi. Renner came back after her baby was born, and lead the women's team to Vancouver 2010.

On February 2, 2007, Renner gave birth to a girl named Aria at a hospital in Banff, Alberta. She and Grandi live in Canmore, Alberta.[9]


  1. ^ Håkensmoen assists Renner.
  2. ^ Jones, Terry (February 15, 2006). "Thank you, Norway!". Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  3. ^ Wise, Mike (February 26, 2006). "Honorable Move Made in a Snap". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Norwegian coach honoured for sportsmanship". Cross Country Canada Ski. April 21, 2006. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  5. ^ Sara Renner VISA Commercial on YouTube
  6. ^ a b "Emotional Renner caps career in final race". February 27, 2010. Retrieved 6 March 2011. 
  7. ^ "Athlete : RENNER Sara". FIS-Ski. International Ski Federation. Retrieved 29 January 2018. 
  8. ^ Brooks DeCillia (August 16, 2012). "Historic backcountry ski lodge gets facelift". CBC News. Retrieved August 17, 2012. 
  9. ^ FIS Newsflash 143. September 5, 2007.