But while the Swiss rider’s two victories on Saturday and Sunday seemed like Alpine day-to-day life for the average spectator, Odermatt was amazed at himself.
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Despite the apparent ease on the icy slope, the path to Cortina turned out to be a continuous tightrope walk. “During the first test, I felt as if I had been absent not only for a few days, but for a long time,” Odermatt was quoted as saying by Swiss newspaper Blick.
“Mentally I didn’t get into my usual flow, I couldn’t really focus on the race,” the overall World Cup winner from 2021/22 continued. “When I scored the first few goals, I was thinking about my knee. When I crossed the finish line, I was convinced this ride was good for my confidence, but I didn’t expect the best time.”
Odermatt – at the pinnacle of his sporting achievements – is even a mystery to himself because of his sheer excellence.
His impressive performance on the ice of Venice also had great taste for Odermatt. In the battle for the World Cup as a whole, the Swiss picked up a few big points due to the elimination of Alexander-Amodt Kielde. Odermatt watches his crystal hat-trick in the Super-G, giant slalom and overall standings. But his hunger is far from satisfied.
Marco Odermatt at the World Cup in Cortina d’Ampezzo
Image source: Getty Images
Odermatt Zurbriggen emulates – and dreams of – the gold rush
Thanks to his victory in Super-G No. 7 and 8, Odermatt has overtaken Swiss skiing legend Didier Cochet – and in that ranking with Pirmin Zubriggen (10) he is only one size ahead of the Swiss.
At the World Ski Championships, the 2022 Olympic giant slalom champion wants to take the next step and finally join a select group of Swiss stars.
In Courchevel and Méribel, Odermatt justified his hopes for his first world championship precious metal in at least three disciplines (giant slalom, super-G and downhill). As he himself revealed in the run-up to the big event, he is now considering starting collecting and emulating the former multi-tiered King Zurbrigen.
“The Super-G combination would definitely be good training for the special Super-G,” he explained to Blick. But he doesn’t want to rush anything and “think hard” at first. After all, four races is a huge stress on his knee. “However, there is a risk that the total load with a station wagon becomes too much for my knees to handle.”
In the 1980s, Zurbriggen rose to become a winter sports icon, winning world championship gold in downhill, super-G, giant slalom, and combined. In the World Cup as a whole, it won four times between 1983 and 1990. A series Odermatt had long predicted.
Pirmin Zurbriggen during his active career
Image source: Getty Images
At the 2018 Junior World Championships in Davos, Odermatt proved he knows how to satisfy his hunger for gold. In that time he has been on top of the podium in downhill, super-G, giant slalom, team and team competitions.
On February 7th, Odermatt will have its first opportunity to embellish its already successful winter at the Alpine Combined – and continue to grow its mark in Swiss skiing history.
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