Marcel Hirscher has been described by other Olympic medalist skiers as one of the best skiers alive. The Austrian alpine ski racer made his World Cup debut in March 2007 and since then has won seven consecutive World Cup titles. He’s won nine medals at the Alpine Skiing World Championships, six of which were gold, and has three Olympic medals, two of which are gold. His impressive collection of titles and awards, and his many years spent dominating the sport have earned him the distinction of the best alpine skier in history.
Born March 2, 1989, in Austria, Hirscher began skiing when he was just 2-and-a-half years old. Both of his parents worked at a ski school, so it only made sense to teach Hirscher how to ski at a young age. His parents realized he was a natural, and supported his talent.
To this day, his father is still one of his biggest supporters and advisers. He turns to him for advice on which lines to take in a race, his skis, and set-up. Hirscher has stated that when he was younger, he struggled to separate his professional relationship from his personal relationship with his father. Now, however, he finds it much easier as he realizes that ultimately he’s the boss of his career and has to live with whatever outcome happens.
Hirscher competes primarily in slalom and giant slalom, and occasionally in super G, but skiing isn’t the only sport that he enjoys. He’s a fan of most extreme sports and enjoys the adrenaline rush he gets from white-water kayaking and rock climbing. But out of all the extreme sports he’s tried, he finds downhill skiing to be the most frightening because of how fast you ski.
In 2015, Hirscher was almost hit by a camera drone during a race. Luckily, he just missed being injured, but the incident resulted in camera drones no longer being allowed at World Cup races.
In Hirscher’s native Austria, alpine skiing is the most popular sport, making him akin to a pop star there. His talent plus his popularity combine to making him one of the biggest names in alpine skiing.