The improbable story of Austrian gold medalists Hermann Maier and Matthias Mayer
If you're an Austrian skier competing in an Olympic super-G event, you might consider mixing in a nasty crash three days before your big race.
Whatever the cosmic reasons, it's a strategy that has worked for the last two Austrians to take gold in the Olympic super-G alpine skiing event.
Matthias Mayer edged his competition by 0.13 seconds to stand atop the podium Thursday in PyeongChang.
You might remember Mayer. He took gold in the men's downhill in Sochi and he clipped a flag in the slalom three days ago, producing the widely viewed video of the skier careening down the slope and taking out a cameraman and course official.
Mayer's super-G gold was Austria's first in 20 years. In Nagano 1998, it was Hermann "The Herminator" Maier who beat his peers down the hill.
In a twisted turn of fate, Maier only claimed his gold medal after walking away from a grisly and infamous downhill crash three days prior.
High-speed alpine skiing crashes are frequently dangerous, so it would certainly be a bold strategy for future Austrian super-G competitors. But we'll be watching closely in Beijing 2022...
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