Austria is blessed with beautiful mountains which form part of the famous Alps and numerous ski resorts so it’s not a surprise to hear that the country got a gold medal in the Winter Olympics for the first time after 12 years. The event was the downhill race considered the original extreme winter events.
Matthias Mayer who never won a World Cup downhill race came out victorious in the recent downhill race. At a young age of 23, his feat was quite a surprise to many knowing that the event normally requires experience. Also, the course he went through in Krasnaya Polyana was technical and highly selective unlike a classic downhill.
Austrian men’s coach Mathias Berthold is confident that Mayer’s victory will give their team positive vibes. He’s all praises for the young skier whom he describes as quiet and a nice guy.
With his victory, Mayer now joins the ranks of other Austrian Olympic men’s downhill champions. They are Toni Sailer, Egon Zimmerman, Franz Klammer, Fritz Strobl, Leonhard Stock and Patrick Ortlieb. The last gold medal earned by Austria was 12 years ago in 2002.
Downhill skiing no matter how traditional it may seem is considered an extreme sport. It involves fast speeds of more than 83 miles per hour and plenty of air that skiers have to deal with along the course to the finish line.