- Associated Press - Thursday, March 20, 2014

MUNICH (AP) - Three-time Olympic champion Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany is retiring from Alpine skiing.

“My decision is to end my career now,” Hoefl-Riesch told reporters in Munich on Thursday.

The 29-year-old German, the 2011 overall World Cup champion, won the super-combined at last month’s Sochi Olympics and also took gold in the super-combined and slalom at the 2010 Vancouver Games.

“One should quit when it’s the best and that (Sochi) was the best that could have happened to me,” Hoefl-Riesch said. “My dream came true once again.”

Hoefl-Riesch fell in the season’s last downhill last week in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, but still won the World Cup discipline title in the event.

She announced her retirement at a ceremony to receive the downhill trophy belatedly. Hoefl-Riesch was taken to a hospital to treat a shoulder injury following her fall in Lenzerheide and missed the medal awards.

In a career spanning 13 years, Hoefl-Riesch was Germany’s most successful Alpine Olympic skier. She also took silver in the super-G in Sochi.

She is a two-time world champion, taking the slalom title in 2009 and the combined in 2013, and had four bronze medals in various disciplines.

On the World Cup circuit, Hoefl-Riesch had 27 wins and 81 podium finishes. Apart from the 2011 overall title and this year’s downhill crown, the versatile skier also won season titles in super-G, super-combined and twice in slalom. Her crash in Lenzerheide probably stopped her form winning the overall title again.

“It was a dream-like career, I was at the top in all disciplines over the years,” Hoefl-Riesch said.

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