Former DJ from the UK, he set his sights on becoming Jamaica’s first Alpine skier during the Winter Olympics. He also wants to promote international competition for the next generation.
Benjamin Alexander (38), a Jamaican father, will represent Jamaica at the Winter Olympic Games in Beijing.
Alexander is a Northampton native who was brought up in Wellingborough. He finished seventh at the Cape Verde National Ski Championships Liechtenstein in the same discipline earlier in the week.
The athlete, who became an internationally renowned DJ who played at major festivals such as Burning Man in the US, only began skiing in 2015 while on holiday in Canada and has no full-time coach.
Alexander spoke to ITV’s This Morning hosts Philip Schofield & Rochelle Humes, saying that he hopes to inspire the next generation to follow his lead.
Alexander stated, “My story really is about participation and encouraging Jamaicans to reach the Olympics.”
“I know who I have found to represent us in alpine skiing 2026. They are better than me.”
Benjamin Alexander (38), whose father was Jamaican, is the only member of Jamaica’s National Ski Team at the Winter Olympic Games.
Asked if he thought he had a chance of winning, he said: ‘I don’t want to take anything away from the athletes that are the top of my sport. These two guys have been skiin since age 2.
‘Their parents have been putting tens of thousands of pounds, if not £50,000 a year, into their training from the age of seven and now, their countries’ ski associations are putting hundreds of thousands of pounds into their development.
‘These guys are showing up with 20 different skis whereas I’m going to show up with one. It’s like those guys are in Formula One and I’m in a go-cart trying to keep up with them.
Alexander counts Dudley Stokes, the pilot of the Jamaican bobsleigh team who competed in the 1988 Olympics, as one of his mentors who keeps in touch with every day.
Alexander recalls that Stokes’ attempts to make it to the Olympics are immortalized in Cool Runnings. Alexander also remembers thinking the film was the “coolest thing since bread”.
Alexander was born to an English mother with a Jamaican dad.
This Morning, he said that Dudley was fantastic and that he and his crew wrote the book on doing outrageous things at the Winter Games for the Caribbean.
“He and I talk absolutely every week. I believe he was my last contact before going to sleep last night. It’s been incredible having him on my team to guide me through some of the tough and challenging moments of this project.’
Dudley Stokes smiles back at his team members as they demonstrate the bobsled pushing form during a sending-off reception for the team at a Tokyo hotel on February 4 1998 ahead of the Winter Olympics
Asked why he chose to compete for Jamaica, Alexander said: ‘There’s lots of kids like me in the United Kingdom that are of mixed race.
“A mixed race person is always the minority within the group you find yourself in.” To my black friends, I’m the guy who is white and to my white friends, I’m the guy who is black.
‘Most people who ski are white, so I’m the black guy and I also happen to be Jamaican so people are always talking about Corn Runnings… It started off as a joke but as the “black representative” in my white group of skier friends, there was never a question of me representing any other flag than Jamaica.’
Alexander started skiing only in 2015. He skied in Whistler Canada in 2015, after he was invited to be a DJ at a party.
I just picked one green running [the easiest]It was the same thing over and again. I lost 27 of these runs the first time that I tried it.
“I believe I completed the run at the end of day, having only fallen seven times on the course. That was for me progress.
“That’s how I look at it all. Take it one day at a while and try to improve each day.
Alexander eventually met US skier Gordon Gray, who in 2019 told Alexander that his technique was atrocious’ and that Alexander couldn’t keep up with him.
Alexander is the son of an English mother, and a Jamaican father. He said without Stokes’ pioneering spirit, Jamaica might not have been able to participate in the Winter Olympics. This would have made Alexander’s path to competing ‘incredibly hard’. Pictured: Alexander skies down a slope during a training session at the Kolasin ski resort on December 21, 2021
Alexander explained: ‘He helped me understand that it would be within my reach if I truly applied myself and dedicated myself to it. Since then, I have been working almost full time on this mission.
Alexander, nearly three years after his debut in Alpine Skiing at the Beijing Winter Olympics is now competing.
According to him, he wants the public to see that no matter what your background is, everyone can participate in winter sports.
He told Eurosport, “If I can start a sport when 32, and reach the Olympics at 38,” then that’s no excuse. “It is not too late.
‘When I began this mission, it was a really selfish pursuit – let’s see where I can take this for myself,’ Alexander said.
“Then, after last year’s incident with George Floyd I received so much support and attention from people who are trying to promote diversity in winter sport.
“Now, it almost feels like I’m under pressure to perform. I’m trying to make winter sports more diverse.
“I am very happy to show the world that no matter your socio-economic background, race or ethnicity, there is a place for you in winter sports.”
Alexander last month stated that Alexander was trying inspire future generations.
Alexander takes to the Kolasin Ski Resort’s slopes during training on December 21, 2021
“Even though people may not be originally from India or Timor, we have the potential to become elite nations in winter sport in our lifetime if we start young and believe in ourselves.”
Alexander comes from a working-class family. He told Olympics.com: ‘My mother, my father and my brother have spent the most part of their working career either in factories or driving.
“None” of the trio graduated from high school without any decent GCSEs, O-levels.
Alexander chose a completely different route and was awarded a scholarship to a private school. He then studied physics at Imperial College London and engineering at Imperial College London.
While studying, Alexander began DJing. He quit the job after two years. In 2002, someone shot Alexander as he was waiting to enter a London nightclub.
He stated, “I thought that was absolute stupidity.” By day, I’m going to basically be at MIT – I went to the Imperial College of Science, Technology, Medicine to study physics – so by day, I’m doing this, and by night, I’m hanging out with people that are trying to kill each other and I gave up music almost instantly at that moment.’
Alexander worked for many years in Hong Kong finance before returning to DJing. After playing the Burning Man Festival in America, he had a residency at Ibiza.