Anders Olsson

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Anders Olsson, a Swedish Paralympian, open water swimmer and triathlete
Vansbrosimningen stamp designed by Henrik Karlsson with Erik Strand and Anders Olsson that is part of the Swedish Series with the Vasaloppet, Vansbrosimningen, Engelbrektsloppet, Lidingöloppet and Vätternrundan
Anders Olsson (born 15 September 1965 in Hagfors) is a Swedish open water swimmer and triathlete from Hedemoravägen. He is showcased on a stamp of the Vansbrosimningen that is part of the Swedish Series together with Erik Strand.

Olsson is paralysed from the waist down and is a 3-time Paralympian.

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Athletic Career

Olsson began to swim at an early age and he was very promising. But in his early teens he started to have problems with his back and eventually underwent an arthrodesis operation. Due to an accident in the home, he fell so badly that he tore several muscles in his back and had to undergo stomach surgery. Because of a failure during the spinal anesthesia, he had to be treated in a medical ventilator and became paralyzed from the waist down.

In 2002, when a close friend made a bet with him that he would swim the Vansbrosimningen, he started to train and when he crossed the finish line he was in the top 100 finishers out of over 3,000 competitors. He later improved and finished 9th in 2007 in the Vansbrosimningen.

In the 2004 Athens Paralympics, he won one gold medal and two bronze medals. His best event is the 400m freestyle, a distance he was undefeated and where he is the current world record holder.

In 2005 he completed the 90 km Vasaloppet, a crosscountry skiing competition, using a sled.

In the 2008 Beijing Paralympics, he won two gold medals in the 100m and 400m freestyle.

He completed a swim from Alcatraz Island in 2011.

In the 2012 London Paralympics, he won a silver in the 400m freestyle, the first time he had beaten in a major international competition.

Vansbrosimningen

The Vansbrosimningen is a large open water swimming competition in Sweden that reached over 14.000 participants in 2013. There are three race lengths: 1 km, 1.5 km and 3 km. The 3 km race is the classical Vansbrosimningen which has been swum since 1950 and is one of the World's Top 100 Open Water Swims. All races start at different point in the Vanån River and end in the Västerdalälven River. The swimmers swim downstream in Vanån and upstream the last ca. 1000 m in Västerdalälven.

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