Alpine skiing has been part of the Winter Olympics since 1936 and that’s when the first combined event was held in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
To the delight of the host nation, Germany’s Franz Pfnür and Gustav Lantschner won gold and silver, respectively.
Franz Pfnür Slalom winner (gold medal) after the results here at the Olympic Winter Games in Garmisch-Partenkirchen in 1936 (Photo by Apic/Getty Images)
Men’s downhill and slalom were added to the St. Mortiz Winter Olympics in 1948. Four years later, the giant slalom made its debut in Oslo, where Stein Eriksen captured the discipline’s inaugural gold medal.
Oslo Winter Olympics (Norway). The Norwegian Stein ERIKSEN has just won the giant slalom and is surrounded by the Austrians Christian PRAV (left, second) and Tony SPIESS (right, third). (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
The Austrian Olympic team made their mark in 1964. The Austrians swept the downhill category, when Christl Haas, Edith Zimmermann and Traudl Hecher all won medals, a first for women’s alpine skiing.
6th February 1964: Austrian skier Christl Haas competing in the women's downhill ski race at the Winter Olympics at Innsbruck, which she went on to win. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)
Over two decades later, a new skiing event was introduced. Super-G debuted in 1988. Franck Piccard of France won gold for the men, while Sigrid Wolf of Austria finished first for the women.
Franck Piccard of France speeds down the course of the men's super giant slalom at the Winter Olympic Games 21 February 1988 in Nakiska, near Calgary. Piccard won the gold medal in front of Austrian Helmut Mayer (silver) and Swedish Lars-Borje Eriksson (bronze). (Photo by PHILIPPE BOUCHON/AFP/Getty Images)
Croatia’s Janica Kostelic was a force to be reckoned with at the Winter Olympics from 1998 to 2006. She’s the only woman to ever win four gold medals in alpine skiing events.
Croatian gold medalist Janica Kostelic in action during the women's giant slalom 2nd run for the Salt Lake 2002 Winter Olympics 22 February 2002 at Park City. (Photo by OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)
Going into the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, no other nation has earned more alpine skiing medals than Austria. The country has captured a total of 105 since the sport’s debut.
JAPAN - FEBRUARY 19: SKI ALPIN: NAGANO 1998 Riesenslalom Maenner 19.02.98, Hermann MAIER (AUT) - GOLD - (Photo by Lutz Bongarts/Bongarts/Getty Images)
About Sandra Prusina
Sandra is a sports journalist based out of Calgary, Canada. She's covered three Olympic Games, as well as other sporting events across Canada.
You can follow her on Twitter at @sprusina
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