December 01st 2020

MCI Livetalk with Olympic Champion Benni Raich.

MCI Livetalk with Olymic Champion Benni Raich.

Olympic Champion Benni Raich in dialogue with MCI-Rector Andreas Altmann. (c) MCI
Olympic Champion Benni Raich in dialogue with MCI-Rector Andreas Altmann. (c) MCI

Benjamin Raich has achieved top performances in the Ski World Cup for almost 20 years. With 36 individual World Cup victories, he is one of the most successful racers in Alpine ski racing and, according to a calculation by ORF, the ski athlete holding the most World Cup points to date. The exceptional athlete sees the courage to make changes as a prerequisite for his success, which also shaped his career.

While successful sporting careers are usually accompanied by a certain amount of renunciation, Raich "never had the feeling of missing out on anything". Finding satisfaction within his family environment had made him a mature athlete, and reduced the danger of the success going to one’s head when he was at the peak of his career.

Raich's childhood represents an important step on his path to success. Growing up on a farm, the Tyrolean took on countless tasks at a young age and considers the trust he was given to be crucial for his personal responsibility and further development. A certain entrepreneurial thinking was also conducive to the training of the athlete with a lot of time as his main investment instrument. "We never looked at the clock, but were always enthusiastic and meticulous - it's fun and will lead to success". During this process he learned not only to understand his body, but also to appreciate the exchange with his companions, to remain unemotional and realistic, and to build up a stable self-confidence: "You have to have a certain conviction about yourself to allow another expert next to you". This mutual "fertilization" ultimately contributed to his longstanding success.

While he started his career as part of the Austrian Ski Team with colleagues such as Hermann Maier, Stephan Eberharter or Mario Matt, he later witnessed the rise of Marcel Hirscher. During this time, not only the competition changed, but also the rules and material. Benjamin Raich thinks, these developments and an analysis-driven training control are necessary, but at the same time emphasizes the importance of following one's instinct. He also thinks it is important to understand the data gained, question it critically and then being prepared to make changes. Because "if you believe that you can always achieve the same success, you will become dulled".

Focusing on others has never been Benni Raich's recipe for success. If anything his inner voice, the intuition of his support staff, as well as the consolidation of the opinions of experts and his closest family circle led him to success with an almost unparalleled consistency in all disciplines. It is still important to Raich, not to let people talk him into anything, to take initiative and not to be selfish. Especially during COVID times, this is an essential piece of advice with general validity.

Mag. Bettina Stichauner | Head Alumni Center Alumni Center & Events
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