- Associated Press - Thursday, February 6, 2014

SOCHI, Russia (AP) - Austria has named Nordic combined athlete Mario Stecher as its flag bearer for Friday’s opening ceremony at the Winter Olympics, replacing Alpine skier Benjamin Raich who has delayed his trip to Sochi.

Stecher won gold in the team event in 2006 and 2010 and is heading into his sixth Olympics.

Raich decided Monday to skip the Feb. 14 super-combined and focus on giant slalom and slalom in the final week of the Games.

The 36-year-old Stecher is Raich’s brother-in-law since marrying his sister Carina Raich six years ago.

Stecher is the Austrian Olympic Committee’s third choice after it initially considered its most decorated Olympian in Sochi, Thomas Morgenstern. However, the ski jumper is recovering from a crash and needs rest ahead of the qualification for the normal hill competition Saturday.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide