Patrick Ortlieb

Patrick Ortlieb ( born May 20, 1967 in Bregenz ) is a former Austrian alpine skier. It was 1992 Olympic champion and 1996 world champion in the downhill. In addition, he has won four World Cup races and six times Austrian Champion. After his athletic career, he was from 1999 to 2002 Member of the Austrian National Council.

Sports career

Ortlieb began at the age of 13 years with the skiing and decided late to start for Austria. His father came from Alsace and is therefore Frenchman. At the beginning of the 1980s, he quickly succeeded over the Vorarlberg State cadres of the ascent to the Austrian Ski Federation junior team. His first major success came the downhill specialist at the World Junior Championship in 1985 with the bronze medal in the downhill. However, he was released after the season from the Austrian Ski Federation squad and had to start for the Vorarlberg Ski again.

1987 Ortlieb managed to jump back into the Austrian Ski Team and found in the 1988/89 season the connection to the top. On 9 December 1988 he ran fifth in the first downhill in Val Gardena for the first time in the World Cup points ranking, the day after he had already reached the second exit on the Saslong second place. In February, he went to Aspen once again among the top ten.

Three more top ten results get him in the season 1989 / 90th The end of January he arrived in Val d'Isere for the first time a heavy crash, suffered a lateral and cruciate ligament and had to end the season prematurely. In the winter of 1990/91 he returned to the World Cup and reached the beginning of December in Val d'Isere again a fifth. With further points wins, he qualified for the 1991 World Championships in Saalbach -Hinterglemm, where he came on the seventh rank after all downhill. With good results in the overseas races in March, he finished sixth in the downhill World Cup. This winter, he won his first Austrian championship - five more were to follow.

In the season 1991/92 Ortlieb drove three times on the podium and improved in the downhill World Cup to fourth place in the overall classification, he finished tenth. The culmination of winter, and his career so far presented the 1992 Winter Olympics dar. On the very demanding and twisty downhill run Bellevarde in Val d'Isere counted Ortlieb as good slider not the favorite, but his established with start number 1 fastest time was undercut by any other driver. Ultimately, the decision was still scarce, because of the race gone with start number 23 Frenchman Franck Piccard was only five hundredths of a second back and also the binned to third Günther Mader had only another 5 hundredths of a second behind. Due to this success, he was honored in 1992 as Austria's sportsman of the year.

In the season 1992/93 Ortlieb drove in two runs in the top three and was also in the Super -G for the first time on the podium. In the combination, he achieved sixth place in Lech and in eighth place in Veysonnaz his best career results. He reached the World Cup with his best finish in seventh place, and also the seventh place in the Super - G World Cup and the sixth rank in the combined times were his best results. Only in the downhill World Cup he fell to seventh place compared to previous years something back. At the 1993 World Championships in Japan Morioka Shizukuishi he came in difficult weather conditions to the eighth rank departure.

After the previous eight podiums Ortlieb enter his sixth World Cup season finally also the first World Cup victory. On 18 December 1993 he won the downhill in Val Gardena, the second victory he celebrated on the Streif in Kitzbuehel on January 15, 1994. Thus he counted now among the favorites at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, but could not his Olympic victory repeat and finished only fourth. In the World Cup he secured his third place at the season finale in Vail third place in the downhill standings.

The 1994/95 season began Ortlieb with his third World Cup victory in the Super- G of Tignes on 11 December - the first and only in this discipline. With two second and two third places he came again on the third place in the downhill World Cup. On 16 December 1995, the Vorarlberg in the downhill in Val Gardena celebrated his fourth and final World Cup victory and came up with two other podium places as in previous years, in third place in the downhill World Cup. The second major success of his career celebrated with the Ortlieb shifted by one year World Cup in the Spanish Sierra Nevada. Before the Italians Kristian Ghedina and Frenchman Luc Alphand he became world champion in the downhill. With this title, he finished an inglorious Austrian losing streak: 14 years drove no red-white- red racers in the downhill on a World Cup podium.

From the season 1996/97 Ortlieb could no longer connect to its previous performance. On December 15, 1996, he reached third place in the downhill in Val d'Isere his last podium and dropped back to 14th place in the downhill World Cup. He was far away at the World Cup in 1997 by a successful title defense and finished eighth. In the 1997/98 season Ortlieb drove only once in the top ten and did not qualify for the Olympic Games, next winter he reached again a ninth place in the downhill in Val Gardena. On 16 January 1999, he crashed in the downhill in Wengen, but escaped with bruises. Very much harder he came a few days later on a training run for the Hahnenkamm downhill in Kitzbühel to fall. After Hausbergkannte he lost control of his skis and crashed almost unrestrained in the fencing. He retired to a comminuted fracture in his right thigh, and a chip on the hip socket and other injuries. Shortly thereafter, Ortlieb announced his retirement from ski racing.

More careers

After his sports career Ortlieb was dated 29 October 1999 to 19 December 2002 for the FPÖ member of the Austrian National Council. Due to the "parking garage scandal " was it a political career, however, denied. He was accused that he should have a wife drugged and raped in the parking garage of the Innsbruck airport in his car.

July 1, 2010 Ortlieb was elected as successor of Rolf Amann President of the Vorarlberg Ski Association.


He lives with his wife and three children in Upper Lech in Vorarlberg, where it leads with his family, the four- star Hotel Montana. His daughter Nina has been part of the 2013/14 season at the C- squad of the Austrian Ski Federation.

Sporting successes

Olympic Winter Games

  • 1992 Albertville: 1 departure, 18 Super -G
  • Lillehammer 1994: 4th exit

World Championships

  • Saalbach -Hinterglemm 1991: 7 Departure
  • Morioka Shizukuishi 1993: 8 Departure
  • Sierra Nevada 1996: 1st exit
  • Sestriere 1997: 8 Departure

Junior World Championships

  • Sugarloaf 1984: 12 Giant Slalom, Downhill 15
  • Jasna 1985: 3rd exit, 7 Giant Slalom

World Cup

  • Season 1990/91: 6 exit summary
  • Season 1991/92: 10th overall World Cup, 4th exit summary
  • 1992/93 Season: 7 Overall World Cup downhill 7 rating, 7 super-G standings, 6 combined score
  • Season 1993/94: 3rd exit summary
  • Season 1994/95: 3rd exit rating, 9 super-G standings
  • 1995/ 96: 3rd exit summary
  • 20 podium finishes, including 4 victories:

Austrian Championships

Patrick Ortlieb was six times Austrian Champion:

  • 5x Departure ( 1991, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996)
  • 1x Super -G ( 1992)


  • Austrian Sportsman of the Year: 1992
  • Gold Decoration for Services to the Republic of Austria: 1992