MARCO BUECHEL ENDS 19-YEAR CAREER
WITH “CLASSIC” RUN IN GARMISCH
BY BRIAN PINELLI
For nearly two decades, Liechtenstein’s Marco “Buxi” Buechel has entertained ski racing
enthusiasts, won countless friends on tour and charmed the media with attitude toward
the sport and his often witty responses to questions.
His final World Cup run in the super G at Garmisch-Partenkirchen on Thursday, March
11th, was a fitting end to his career. As the final racer starting 23rd out of the gate, Buechel shared a Champagne toast with his technician and then proceeded down the Kandahar
piste attired in a custom-made suit with black tie, Bermuda shorts and knee-high socks.
Along the way, Buxi slowed to shake hands with coaches and course workers — but
made every gate, crossing the finish line to thunderous applause and laughter from the
appreciative fans in attendance.
“My technician suggested I ski with a Borat swimsuit, but I said ‘Nah, that’s a no go,’ so
I decided for the gentleman version with a nice suit and I think that is representative of
me,” said Buechel after the final run with a huge smile on his face and Bavarian brew in
hand. “I wanted to make it funny and a little bit special so I added the shorts.”
Not that it mattered, but Buechel clocked a time of 2: 25. 59, just under a minute slower
than race winner, Erik Guay of Canada.
“I think I skied perfectly and I don’t know if the timing was running, but I thought
technically I won that race,” joked Buechel.
BRIAN PINELLI (BUECHEL)
Buechel’s storied World Cup career fittingly began in Garmisch back in January 1991.
“The special thing is that my very first World Cup race was here — a super G in Garmisch and I was 19-years-and-two-months-old,” he said. “My last super G race is here and
I’m 38 and four months. Plus my first victory was here — a super-G in Garmisch 
so I think that it’s unique.”
Over the course of a highly impressive career, Buechel competed in six Olympic Winter
Games and won four World Cup races — two downhills and two super G’s. He also stood
on 18 podiums and claimed a silver medal in giant slalom at the World Championships
in Beaver Creek in 1999.
OUT OF THE GATE
“What I will miss most — and that’s the reason why I race
in the first place — is emotions,” said Buechel during an interview earlier this season in Kitzbuehel, Austria. “If it’s good
or bad emotions, if I feel horrible or disappointed. Whether
I feel really nervous or I’m happy or satisfied with what has
happened, that’s what I’m going to miss most.”
The 6-foot, 1-inch, 215-pound Buechel wrapped up his career with a highly respectable season. He finished ninth in
the downhill standings achieving five top 10s in nine races
including the Olympics. The highlight was clearly his third-place showing at the Lauberhorn downhill in Wengen, Switzerland.
“He’s one of the nicest guys on tour and really shows a love
for the sport where a lot of people get too excited about results
and actual competition,” said Canada’s Manny Osborne-Paradis, who shared the podium with Buechel in Wengen. “When
he was third in Wengen he was stoked — he really enjoys the
moment and that is honorable which shows he’s in it for the
Although Buechel’s competitive career is now complete, he’ll
return to the White Circus next season as an analyst for German broadcaster ZDF. The native of Liechtenstein also said
that after a few weeks of sponsor responsibilities he will take
six months to travel the world. He has also mentioned riding
his Harley Davidson across the United States.
“Ski racing takes a lot of courage and emotions,” said Buechel.
“Sometimes it was not easy, but I was a professional through
and through until the last race until today.”
Wagnerberger dies at 73
Long-term International Ski Federation (FIS) council
member and former Willy Bogner Company chief
financial officer Fritz Wagnerberger has died. Wag-
nerberger was 73 and had
been battling stomach can-
cer for several years.
Wagnerberger had been a
member of the FIS council
since 1971 and had sat on
the executive committee.
He was a longtime advi-
sor and confident of the
former president of the
FIS, Marc Hodler, as well as
his successor and current
president, Gian Franco
Kasper. He served as chairman of the FIS Finance Com-
mission since 1975 and as FIS Treasurer since 1990.
“Fritz Wagnerberger was an excellent finance profes-
sional with an exceptional understanding of the global
financial markets,” said FIS President Gian Franco
Kasper. “He oversaw FIS’s finances over the years
and made sure that we continue to find ourselves in a
strong position despite the recent financial crisis.”