Ivica Kostelić

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Ivica Kostelić
Alpine skier  
Ivica Kostelic 25102010 CroSki AE09283.jpg
Ivica Kostelić in October 2010
Disciplines Slalom, Combined, Super-G,
Giant slalom, Downhill
ClubSki club Zagreb [1]
Born (1979-11-23) 23 November 1979 (age 39)
Zagreb, SFR Yugoslavia
Height1.82 m (6 ft 0 in) [1]
Website ivica.kostelic.hr
Teams4 – (20022014)
World Cup
Seasons20 – (19982017)
Wins26 [2]
Podiums60 [2]
Overall titles1 – (2011)
Discipline titles5 – (SL in 2002 and 2011, K in 2011, 2012 and 2013)

Ivica Kostelić (pronounced  [ˈiʋitsa ˈkɔstɛlitɕ] ; born 23 November 1979) is a former World Cup alpine ski racer from Croatia. He specialized in slalom and combined, but was also one of the few alpine World Cup ski racers able to score points in all disciplines. He is the brother of skiing champion Janica Kostelić. In his career he was coached by his father Ante Kostelić, as well as by Kristian Ghedina and Tomislav Krstičević.

FIS Alpine Ski World Cup international alpine skiing competition during northern winter

The FIS Alpine Ski World Cup is the top international circuit of alpine skiing competitions, launched in 1966 by a group of ski racing friends and experts which included French journalist Serge Lang and the alpine ski team directors from France and the USA. It was soon backed by International Ski Federation president Marc Hodler during the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships 1966 at Portillo, Chile, and became an official FIS event in the spring of 1967 after the FIS Congress at Beirut, Lebanon. The first World Cup ski race was held in Berchtesgaden, West Germany, on January 5, 1967. Jean-Claude Killy of France and Nancy Greene of Canada were the overall winners for the first two seasons.

Alpine skiing Sport of skiing downhill

Alpine skiing, or downhill skiing, is the pastime of sliding down snow-covered slopes on skis with fixed-heel bindings, unlike other types of skiing, which use skis with free-heel bindings. Whether for recreation or sport, it is typically practised at ski resorts, which provide such services as ski lifts, artificial snow making, snow grooming, restaurants, and ski patrol.

Croatia Republic in Central Europe

Croatia, officially the Republic of Croatia, is a country at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, on the Adriatic Sea. It borders Slovenia to the northwest, Hungary to the northeast, Serbia to the east, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro to the southeast, sharing a maritime border with Italy. Its capital, Zagreb, forms one of the country's primary subdivisions, along with twenty counties. Croatia has an area of 56,594 square kilometres and a population of 4.28 million, most of whom are Roman Catholics.


After considerable success in junior competitions, Kostelić's World Cup career alternated between triumph and injury. His main accomplishments include a World Championship gold medal in slalom in 2003, Olympic silver medal in slalom in 2010, Olympic silver medals in combined in 2006 (traditional combined), 2010 (super combined) and 2014, as well as the overall World Cup title in 2011.

FIS Alpine World Ski Championships international alpine skiing event

The FIS Alpine World Ski Championships are an alpine skiing competition organized by the International Ski Federation (FIS).

Slalom skiing alpine skiing discipline

Slalom is an alpine skiing and alpine snowboarding discipline, involving skiing between poles or gates. These are spaced more closely than those in giant slalom, super giant slalom and downhill, necessitating quicker and shorter turns. Internationally, the sport is contested at the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships, and at the Olympic Winter Games.

FIS Alpine World Ski Championships 2003 2003 edition of the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships

The FIS Alpine World Ski Championships 2003 were held in St. Moritz, Switzerland, at Piz Nair from February 2-16, 2003.

Kostelić scored a total of 26 World Cup race victories and a total of 59 World Cup podiums during his career (as of February 2014). He won the slalom World Cup title in 2002 and 2011, and the combined World Cup title in 2011 and 2012.

Since 2008, he finished among the top six in the overall World Cup standings each season (2008: sixth; 2009: fourth; 2010: fifth; 2011: first; 2012: fourth; 2013: fifth). He also scored points in all disciplines each of those seasons, and his best race results were a seventh place in downhill, a second place in giant slalom, and victories in all other disciplines (11 in slalom, 1 in parallel-slalom, 2 in combined, 4 in super combined, and 1 in super-G).

Super-G racing discipline of alpine skiing

Super giant slalom, or super-G, is a racing discipline of alpine skiing. Along with the faster downhill, it is regarded as a "speed" event, in contrast to the technical events giant slalom and slalom. It debuted as an official World Cup event during the 1983 season and was added to the official schedule of the World Championships in 1987 and the Winter Olympics in 1988.

Ivica Kostelić is currently one of the coaches the Croatian national team.


Early World Cup years (1998–2002)

Kostelić made his first World Cup start in October 1998 in Sölden, Austria, at the age of 18, but failed to qualify for a second run. [3] He did not finish any of his first 11 World Cup races over 3 seasons, until finally scoring World Cup points for the first time in Sestriere, Italy, in December 2000. His first three seasons on the World Cup all ended prematurely due to injuries, failing to make it past December or January each season.

Sölden Place in Tyrol, Austria

Sölden is a municipality in the Ötztal valley of Tyrol, Austria.

Breakthrough (2002–2005)

His big breakthrough came during the 2002 season, when he shockingly won the slalom at Aspen, Colorado, in November 2001 starting from the 64th bib number, his first finish higher than 21st place in any World Cup race. He won two more slaloms that season, and had three additional podiums (top 3), enough to clinch the slalom season title over Bode Miller while avoiding season-ending injury for the first time in his career.

Aspen Mountain (ski area)

Aspen Mountain is a ski area in the western United States, located in Pitkin County, Colorado, just outside and above the city of Aspen. It is situated on the north flank of Aspen Mountain at an elevation of 11,212 ft (3,417 m). Aspen Mountain forms the end of Richmond Ridge, a long ridge that extends 10 miles south at approximately 11,000 ft (3,400 m) to join the main spine of the Elk Mountains.

Bode Miller American alpine ski racer

Samuel Bode Miller is an American former World Cup alpine ski racer. He is an Olympic and World Championship gold medalist, a two-time overall World Cup champion in 2005 and 2008, and the most successful male American alpine ski racer of all time. He is also considered one of the greatest World Cup racers of all time with 33 race victories and being one of five men to win World Cup events in all five disciplines. He is the only skier with five or more victories in each discipline. In 2008, Miller and Lindsey Vonn won the overall World Cup titles for the first U.S. sweep in 25 years.

Kostelić would continue his success during the next season, winning three more slalom races by mid-season, and adding a gold medal in slalom in February at the 2003 World Championships in St. Moritz, Switzerland. He would narrowly miss repeating his slalom title, falling to second place as Kalle Palander won four consecutive slaloms in late season to clinch the globe. He would go on to win another slalom race during the 2003–2004 season, the 7th win of his career, before injuries again ended his season prematurely in January. He would return to World Cup competition in time for the start of the 2004–2005 season, but would fail to finish any of his first 7 races that year. Despite a pair of podiums later that season and occasional top-10 finishes, he would not win another World Cup race for nearly three years.

Resurgence as all-event skier (2006–2010)

Kostelić began his World Cup career as a technical specialist, racing only slalom and GS (with an occasional super-G), but started to ski more often the speed events including downhill during the 2006 season, primarily in order to compete in the new format of super combined, which consists of single runs of downhill and slalom. He did win a Nor-Am downhill in December 1998 at Lake Louise, Canada. As his sister Janica, 'Ivo' has always been aiming to become a complete racer able to excel in all specialties. He scored his first World Cup points at Kitzbuehel, Austria, finishing 29th on the 'Streif' in January 2008. A week later he was 8th in the downhill at Chamonix, in France. His broadened portfolio brought quick dividends, with a silver medal in the combined (a traditional combined with a single downhill and two runs of slalom) at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino, Italy, in February. He would follow that success during the 2007 World Cup season with a win in the super combined in Reiteralm, Austria, in December 2006, his eighth World Cup win and first other than slalom.

Starting with the 2008 season, Kostelić joined the select group of World Cup racers able to excel in all disciplines. Although he failed to win any World Cup races during the 2008 season, he finished second 4 times and third twice in slalom and super combined events, and for the first time scored points in all disciplines. He would finish second in the combined standings and sixth in the overall. The next season brought another win in slalom, along with three more second places (including in GS for his first time) and a pair of thirds, as he moved up to fourth in the overall standings while again taking second in the slalom standings. Success in all disciplines continued in the 2010 season, with two more World Cup wins in slalom and combined (for a total of 11 in his career) along with a second in super-G, his first podium in a speed event. At the 2010 Winter Olympics in Whistler, he won a pair of silver medals, in slalom and combined.

Overall World Cup title (2011)

Kostelić's skiing would reach another level during the 2011 season. Following a third in the season-opening slalom in November at Levi, Finland, he suffered a string of mediocre finishes outside the top-10 for the rest of 2010. Then he opened the New Year with a victory in the first-ever Munich City Event parallel slalom on 2 January, and took second place four days later in the slalom in his hometown of Zagreb. He followed that up with three more wins over the next two weeks in slalom and super combined at Adelboden and Wengen, Switzerland, to take the lead in the overall World Cup standings for the first time. At the Hahnenkamm races in Kitzbühel, Austria, he had victories in super-G and combined, plus a second place in slalom, which opened a gap of more than 400 points over his nearest competitors in the overall ranking. A week later, he won the super combined in Chamonix, France, his third straight win in combined and clinching the combined title for the season with one race still remaining. [4] It was his seventh victory of January 2011, the most by any alpine ski racer in a single calendar month in World Cup history, and he scored points in all 14 World Cup races held in January, including two seconds and two fifths along with top-30 finishes in all three downhills, for a total of 999 points in January alone.

After the stunning success of January, Kostelić's results tailed off considerably and he would fail to finish higher than fifth in any of the remaining 10 World Cup races on the season. In February, Kostelić won a bronze medal in super-G at the 2011 World Championships in Garmisch, but finished only 8th and 13th in the slalom and giant slalom after he sustained a knee injury in the second giant slalom run. He had chosen not to race the World Championships downhill or the super combined (in which he was the clear favorite to win the gold medal) in order to avoid injury on the extremely icy course. [5] On 12 March, five races before the end of the season, he clinched his first overall World Cup title, [6] and he would clinch the slalom title at the final race in Lenzerheide, Switzerland on 19 March, despite finishing out of the points that day. [7] Kostelić would win a total of three crystal globes for the 2011 season including the overall, slalom, and combined titles.

Defending the overall World Cup title (2012)

In the 2012 season Kostelić had a better start than the year before, winning two slaloms in December. His next victories were the super combined and the slalom at Wengen, and the following weekend he won also the classical combined of the Hahnenkamm races (downhill and slalom) in Kitzbühel, where he took the overall lead for the first time that season. However, in February 2012 he sustained an injury and missed 11 races, including two classic slaloms and one parallel, in Stockholm. In the meantime, Marcel Hirscher took the lead in the overall standings and would go on to claim his first overall title. Kostelić returned to action in Schladming at the end of the season, and competed only in slalom. He finished 16th and André Myhrer took the slalom title.

Personal life

Born and raised in Zagreb, his parents, Ante and Marica, are former elite team handball players. They taught Ivica and his sister Janica, two years younger, to ski on the nearby hill Sljeme (now the site of the annual Snow Queen Trophy World Cup races). [8] Janica Kostelić also became an accomplished skier, and Ante Kostelić remained their primary ski coach throughout their careers, and was the head coach of the Croatian ski team. [9]

In 2006 Kostelić passed the entrance exam at the University of Zagreb to become a part-time undergraduate student of history. [10]

In 2014 Kostelić married longtime girlfriend Elin, a native of Iceland. In October she gave birth to their first child, a son Ivan. In July 2016 Elin gave birth to their second child, a son Leon. [11]

Nacional article

In January 2003, after winning the slalom at Kranjska Gora, Kostelić told the reporters that before the race he had felt "powerful, all-conquering, like a German soldier ready for battle in 1941", in reference to the June 1941 German invasion of the Soviet Union. [12] Although the Croatian media had largely ignored the statement, the weekly tabloid Nacional picked up the story and published an article featuring previously unreleased statements made by Kostelić from an interview that he gave to the weekly in May 2002. According to Nacional Kostelić said that he was "fascinated" with the scale of the World War II Luftwaffe attack on Britain and gave an opinion on the differences between national socialism and communism saying that "Nationalism was still a healthy system for someone who was ambitious. In communism, we weren’t permitted to be ambitious, and both systems were totalitarian." [13]

His remarks were interpreted by the weekly as a sign of far right political leanings and the story attracted attention from international press. [14] Kostelić then issued a statement claiming that the sentences published by Nacional were taken out of context and that they were made in informal conversation conducted after the formal interview, and added that "my heart is neither left- nor right-oriented, only towards sports, and my mind is only on skiing". [12]

Other journalists had dismissed his original statement as nothing more than a badly chosen metaphor due to the fact that both Ivica and his father Ante are avid World War II buffs. [12] Since 2002 Ante Kostelić owns a publishing house which published the Croatian edition of the award-winning book Stalingrad by Antony Beevor. In April 2010 the company also published a book (Waffen-SS, Mračne Sile Zločinačke Politike – Waffen-SS, Dark Forces of Evil Politics) about the Waffen-SS which Ante Kostelić had edited. [15]

World Cup results

Season titles

2002 Slalom [16]
2011 Overall [17]
Combined [18]
Slalom [19]
2012 Combined [20]
2013 Combined A

A Unofficial, tied with Alexis Pinturault.

Season standings

2001 2110740
2002 227122
2003 237227
2004 2434143037
2005 25317
2006 26401516
2007 2725163
2008 28654025352
2009 2942826474
2010 30542115233
2011 3111113251
2012 324223431
2013 3353142844   1 [A]
2014 344216323430
2015 355031594
2016 3610520
2017 3713935

A Crystal globes in Combined have not been officially awarded for 2013 season. However, athletes still get their medals.

Race victories

2002 25 November 2001 Aspen, USA Slalom
13 January 2002 Wengen, SwitzerlandSlalom
9 March 2002 Flachau, AustriaSlalom
2003 16 December 2002 Sestriere, ItalySlalom
5 January 2003 Kranjska Gora, SloveniaSlalom
12 January 2003 Bormio, ItalySlalom
2004 15 December 2003 Madonna di Campiglio, ItalySlalom
2007 10 December 2006 Reiteralm, Austria Super combined
2009 22 December 2008 Alta Badia, ItalySlalom
2010 17 January 2010Wengen, SwitzerlandSlalom
24 January 2010 Kitzbühel, AustriaCombined
2011 2 January 2011 Munich, GermanyParallel slalom
9 January 2011 Adelboden, SwitzerlandSlalom
14 January 2011Wengen, SwitzerlandSuper combined
16 January 2011Slalom
21 January 2011Kitzbühel, Austria Super-G
23 January 2011Combined
30 January 2011 Chamonix, FranceSuper combined
2012 8 December 2011 Beaver Creek, USASlalom
21 December 2011Flachau, AustriaSlalom
13 January 2012Wengen, SwitzerlandSuper combined
15 January 2012Slalom
22 January 2012Kitzbühel, AustriaCombined
12 February 2012 Sochi, RussiaSuper combined
2013 27 January 2013Kitzbühel, AustriaCombined
10 March 2013Kranjska Gora, SloveniaSlalom

World Championships results

  Year   Age  Slalom  Giant 
1999 1932
2001 21
2003 231DNF1
2005 25DNF1
2007 27 DNF2 DSQ1 12
2009 29 DNS1
2011 31 8 13 3
2013 33 5 25 28 20 2
2015 35 15 DNF 12
2017 37 38

Olympic results

OlympicsAgeDownhillSuper-GGiant slalomSlalomCombined
2002 Salt Lake City 22&
9th DNF &
2006 Turin 26&
31st &
6th Silver medal with cup.svg 2nd
2010 Vancouver 30 18th 16th 7th Silver medal with cup.svg 2nd Silver medal with cup.svg 2nd
2014 Sochi 34&
24th 27th 9th Silver medal with cup.svg 2nd

Podiums per discipline

Discipline1st2nd3rdTotal podiums
Slalom 16101642
Giant slalom 0101
Super-G 1113
Combined 4217
Super combined 56112
Parallel slalom 1012
Total podiums27202067

NOTE: This table counts all career races in A-team, including FIS World Cup, FIS World Championships and Winter Olympics.

See also

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  11. Ivica Kostelić postao je tata i ponosno objavio: Rodio se sin
  12. 1 2 3 White, Jim (20 January 2003). "'Of course he is not a Nazi. He is a man who likes history'". The Guardian . Retrieved 5 May 2011.
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Winter Olympics
Preceded by
Jakov Fak
Flagbearer for Croatia
Sochi 2014
Succeeded by
Natko Zrnčić-Dim