Christian “Chrigel” Maurer is an extreme athlete from Switzerland and is one of the world's best paragliders. The native of the Bernese Highlands took to the air for the first time on a tandem flight with his father when he was just 7. After passing his paragliding test at age 16, he was finally “free as a bird” and decided to become a competitive paraglider.
My motto: Plan tomorrow, but live today!
- Chrigel Maurer
After finishing his brick-mason apprenticeship, he spent two years working in the occupation before he could turn his passion as a test pilot into a profession. Maurer’s first important athletic success was his first-place finish at the Junior Challenge in 2000. He won the title at the European Paragliding Championships in 2004 and also captured the Paragliding World Cup in 2005-2007. He took part in the hike-and-fly competition “Red Bull X-Alps” for the first time in 2009 – and won it right away. He has been defending his top ranking ever since and remains unbeaten in all subsequent competitions. Despite all of his years of flying, the moment he touched down during the Red Bull X-Alps after crossing the mountains is still a highlight. He won his third title in the record time of six days and 23 hours. Chrigel Maurer is married, has two children and also works part time as a coach, paragliding teacher and speaker.