In the fastest Alpine skiing race in Olympic history, Beat Feuz was quickest of all.
The 35-year-old Swiss averaged a Winter Games record 68.7 mph to win the men’s downhill gold medal, his first in three Olympic appearances. Feuz conquered “The Rock” downhill course in 1:42.69, edging 41-year-old Frenchman Johan Clarey by one tenth of a second.
With his silver, Clarey became the oldest Olympic medalist in Alpine skiing history. Austria’s Matthias Mayer, a gold medalist at the previous two Winter Games, took bronze.
For Feuz, widely considered the most consistent downhill skier ever, Olympic gold was the lone missing piece to a legendary resume in the sport’s fastest discipline. He was crowned season-long champion in the downhill in every World Cup season from 2018-2021 and holds a total of 13 World Cup wins and 43 podiums. Feuz won two medals – a bronze in the downhill and silver in super-G – at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games.
Clarey had never won a medal in three previous tries at the Winter Olympics. His run drew cheers and applause from his fellow competitors at the bottom of the course. “Just having a medal, whether you’re 20 or 41 like I am, is just incredible,” the Frenchman said. Clarey replaces American Bode Miller, 36 when he took super-G bronze in 2014, as the oldest Alpine medalist ever.
All three Americans in the field – Bryce Bennett, Ryan Cochran-Siegle and Travis Ganong – finished inside the top-20. Cochran-Siegle led the trio with a 14th-place finish.
Norway's Aleksander Aamodt Kilde, the world's top-ranked downhill skier and favorite going into the race, finished fifth. He and girlfriend Mikaela Shiffrin both came away from a busy Monday on the slope without hardware after Shiffrin crashed out of the women's giant slalom during her first run.