‘One last big push’: Aksel Lund Svindal set to retire after World Championships

Norwegian skier Aksel Lund Svindal is to call time on his skiing career after next month’s World Championships in Sweden.

The four-time Olympic medalist confirmed his impending retirement at Kitzbuhel this weekend — ending a 17-year World Cup career.

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“One last big push out the start gate at the World Championships in Åre. After that I’ll be watching this great sport from the sidelines,” Svindal wrote on his Instagram account.

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Injuries take their toll

The downhill skier has won eight world championship medals during his illustrious career — winning the overall World Cup title in 2007 and 2009 — but he’s been dogged with injury in recent years, tearing both his ACL and meniscus in a traumatic fall in 2016.

However, Svindal did manage to return last year to take Olympic downhill gold in Pyeongchang — becoming the oldest skier to win Olympic gold.

However, the Norwegian — who has a career total of 36 World Cup wins — was forced to pull out of Kitzbuhel this weekend after hurting his right knee in a training run.

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“Skiing has given me more than I could ever dream of. Thank you,” continued one of Norway’s most successful skiers.

“I’m writing this with some butterflies in my stomach, but also a smile on my face. I think that’s a good sign that this is the right decision.”

Svindal confirmed he would rest his body until his final race at the World Championships in Are, where the 36-year-old won his first world titles back in 2007.