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Ted Ligety      

U.S. Champion Alpine Ski Racer; 2006 Olympic Gold Medalist

Skiing always comes first for 2006 Olympic gold medalist and four-time World Cup giant slalom champion Ted Ligety. Whether it's dropping cliffs, taking the snowmobiles into the Utah backcountry or laying down some of the most incredible angles in all of ski racing, "Shred" is constantly pushing and evolving the sport.

Describing 2013 as a "breakout" season for Ligety is a drastic understatement. Ligety set the tone from the very first race with an historic 2.75-second giant slalom victory in Soelden. The tone then turned to full-on rock concert volume as Ligety won all but two GS races (most by monster margins), to win the fourth Audi FIS Alpine World Cup giant slalom title of his career. The six GS wins also put him in some pretty elite company, as the only other man to win that many in a single season is Ingemar Stenmark. The victory parade, paired with incredible success in super G and a decent slalom season, put him over the 1,000-point barrier for the first time in his career, placing him third in the overall standings.

But that was just World Cup. At the World Championships, Shred nailed super G gold, super combined gold and defended his GS gold. The hat trick made him the first man since Jean Claude Killy did it 45 years ago at the 1968 World Championships.

A better description of Ligety's 2013 season might be that he went from being one of the best skiers in the world to a legend of the sport.

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Ted Ligety wins World Cup giant slalom opener in Soelden (video ...

Make it three in a row for Ted Ligety. The world's best giant slalom skier won the season-opening World Cup in Soelden, Austria, for the third straight year onĀ ...

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