Beat Feuz Announces Retirement after Kitzbühel
Beat Feuz surprisingly announced today he will end his successful career after the races in Kitzbühel.
"For years, pushing my limits and taking risks have been my passion in ski racing. My feeling was often the key to success. But now my feeling tells me that the physical limits have been reached", Feuz explained in a press release about his retirement.
"I'm incredibly grateful that I've been able to practice my passion for so long and I'm now looking forward to more time with my family and I'm excited to see what new challenges will come in my life (...) After 16 years in the World Cup, I will end my active career as a ski racer on Saturday, January 21st. I'm looking forward to my favorite races in Wengen and to be able to enjoy Kitzbühel again", he added.
Beat Feuz is undoubtedly one of the best Downhill skiers ever.
He has won four Downhill Crystal Globes. Between the 2017-2018 and 2020-2021 seasons, the 35-year-old Swiss ace won the Downhill World Cup four times in a row. He became the second male skier to win four successive Downhill titles, after Franz Klammer from 1974-1975 to 1977-1978. The Austrian is the only man to collect five Downhill globes (1974-1978 and in 1982-1983).
Beat Feuz (13 victories) is one shy of equalling Michael Walchhofer and Aksel Lund Svindal (both with 14) in seventh place on the men's list for most World Cup Downhill wins. Franz Heinzer and Hermann Maier (both 15) are joint in the fifth position.
With 47, Feuz holds the men's record for most World Cup Downhill podium finishes six more than any other skier (41 by Franz Klammer and Peter Müller). Last season the Swiss collected 7 World Cup Downhill podiums, the same as in 2017-2018 and 2019-2020.
He won the Downhill classic in Wengen three times. He triumphed on the Lauberhorn in 2012, 2018 and 2020.
Last season Feuz achieved his only win in the second Downhill held in Kitzbühel. It was the third win on the Streif. He previously won in 2021 the two Downhills held in the Tirolean ski mecca. He joined the group of seven skiers to have won on the Streif more than twice in the Alpine Ski World Cup: Didier Cuche (5), Franz Klammer (4), Dominik Paris (3), Franz Heinzer (3), Karl Schranz (3), Luc Alphand (3) and Pirmin Zurbriggen (3).
He won three World Championship medals. In Vail-Beaver Creek 2015 and in Cortina d'Ampezzo 2021 he won bronze, in 2017 he won gold at the World Championships in St. Moritz.
He also won three Olympic medals. In 2018 he took silver in the Super-G and bronze in the Downhill in Pyeongchang. And in 2022 Beat Feuz won the Men's Downhill at the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing.
Feuz is the fourth Downhill Olympic Champion from Switzerland after Bernhard Russi (1972), Pirmin Zurbriggen (1988), and Didier Defago (2010).
The 35-year-old ski ace became the fourth man to complete the Downhill set of an Olympic title, World title, Crystal Globe, and a win on the Streif in Kitzbühel, after Jean-Claude Killy, Pirmin Zurbriggen, and Franz Klammer.
In his grandiose career, Beat Feuz has won everything a Downhill skier can dream.
In an exciting race, Beat Feuz won the gold medal, confirming his dominance of the discipline in the last seasons. He mastered a tricky "Rock" racecourse with manmade dry and grippy snow that had never been raced before.
The Swiss has been the best and, above all, the most constant Downhill skier in the World Cup for years.