Skiing: It's Good To Be Alberto...Once Again

Outside magazine, April 1995

Skiing: It's Good To Be Alberto...Once Again
By Todd Balf

Several years ago, Italy's Alberto Tomba said that his dream slalom run included a glass of wine at the start, a cigarette on the way down, and a first-place finish when it was all over. As the 1995 season progressed, it seemed more and more like a good year to try it. At last count, Tomba had won seven straight slalom events and three of five giant slaloms. In Kitzbühel, Austria, in late January, the 28-year-old looked laughably dominant, blitzing the field on the final slalom run of the day. Back to his frolicsome self, Tomba then did some celebratory nuzzling with his dog, Yukon, followed by a few cartwheels and flips and a full-speed dash into the bosom of his adoring slopeside fan club. This, a year after he'd morbidly announced that he'd retire at season's end.

Elsewhere, Kyle Rasmussen, the American downhiller who's also been thinking of retiring, captured one of the sport's alpine jewels, the downhill at Wengen, Switzerland. The victory, Rasmussen's first World Cup win ever, shocked many, since the Californian is considered a Super G specialist. "It was like a carnival ride,'' said the giddy 26-year-old, "like going to Disneyland.''

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