L Alpine skiing

The last ride on the Streif: Josef Ferstl on the slope where he celebrated his greatest success. © APA / GEORG HOCHMUTH

The next one stops: Germany is running out of skiers

After Thomas Dreßen, another German Kitzbühel winner is retiring from skiing. Josef “Pepi” Ferstl will end his career after the two home races this weekend in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.

The 35-year-old Ferstl announced this on Thursday in a statement from the German Ski Association. Ferstl won the Super-G on the Streif in January 2019 (with start number 1, which is a sensation in Super-G) and celebrated the greatest success of his career. Two years earlier he had won the Super-G in Val Gardena.

After recent poor years, Ferstl tried once again to break into the world's best this season. In his ten races this winter, the veteran only made it into the top 30 twice. “If your head is no longer willing to take full risks, it is time to draw a line under the belt,” says Ferstl. Bitter for the German speed team: After Dreßen, another experienced top athlete is missing.

Kitzbühel winner 2019: Josef Ferstl with then third Dominik Paris (r.) and Johan Clarey. © APA / HERBERT NEUBAUER

Ferstl indicated that he would remain involved in skiing even after his active career ended. “I can't help it, the passion and fascination for racing is just too great, that's what my heart beats for. “So I will remain connected to this sport – in whatever form – for the rest of my life,” he said.


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