Tina amazes in so many ways

Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:54am EST
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By Manuele Lang

(Reuters) - Tina Maze knows how to make an impression on and off the snow.

The record-breaking Slovenian skier's past exploits include flashing her bra in a finish-area protest and singing her way into her country's hit parade with a catchy "My Way is My Decision".

More importantly, the woman who could be competing for medals in all five Alpine events at Sochi has commanded attention by winning races and becoming the 2013 overall World Cup champion in record style.

The 30-year-old, who set up her own "Team to aMaze" training squad in 2008 after falling out with the national setup, won the overall World Cup as the first skier of either sex to surpass 2,000 points in a single season.

Maze also notched up a record 24 podium appearances in a single season, beating Austrian Hermann Maier's mark of 22, and celebrated 11 victories in all disciplines - downhill, Super-G, giant slalom, slalom and Super-combined.

One of only six women to have won in all five events, and only three ever to have done so in a single season, Maze has 22 World Cup victories to her name so far.

At the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, she won silver in super-G and giant slalom on the slopes in Whistler and later described on her website (www.tinamaze.com) what that had felt like.

"You lose words, you stare, you smile, tears are coming down, it is pure pleasure, you feel the top, you are shaking," she wrote. "I did something extraordinary and 'this is it' is going through your mind."   Continued...

Tina Maze of Slovenia reacts after the Super G part of the World Cup Women's super combined race in Altenmarkt-Zauchensee January 12, 2014. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger