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U.S. skier Ted Ligety on the verge of an amazing feat

February 14, 2013|By Houston Mitchell
  • Ted Ligety holds up the two gold medals he has won at this year's world championships.
Ted Ligety holds up the two gold medals he has won at this year's world… (Herbert Neubauer / EPA )

U.S. skier Ted Ligety is on the verge of joining some elite company.

He has already won gold medals in the super-G and super-combined at the world championships in Austria this week, so if Ligety wins the giant slalom Friday, he will become the first man to win three or more gold medals at a world championships since skiing legend  Jean-Claude Killy won four gold medals in 1968.

By the way, Ligety's specialty is the giant slalom, and he is favored to win Friday. So, no pressure at all.

“I did not expect to have two gold medals,” Ligety said. “I was hoping to get medals in the super-G and the combined, but I didn't think they would be gold. So that's definitely a pleasant surprise. But maybe that puts a little added pressure for the GS. We'll see.”

The only other men to accomplish the feat were France's Emile Allais, who won three events at the 1937 worlds, Norway's Stein Eriksen, who won three at the 1954 worlds and Austria's Toni Sailer, who won four golds at the 1956 Olympics, which also doubled as the world championships that year, and three at the 1958 worlds.

Ligety has won four of the five World Cup giant slaloms this season and is also the defending world champion in GS.

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