Bode Miller Calling it Quits?

Nearing his 36th birthday, Bode Miller is thinking of the future and the past as well. With retirement looming closer and closer for him, most fans of the American racer think back to his past years, not including the loss of the 2012 season due to a knee surgery, he has achieved many lengths most racers cant say they have. When he burst onto the scene in 1998 and first represented the U.S. in the ’98 Olympics in Nagano and placed a mere 98th. He caught the worlds eye in 2002 at the Salt Lake City Olympics, where he placed 2nd in the Combined and Giant Slalom (GS) events. With an amazing follow-up, Miller won 4 World Cup titles form 2003 to 2005. People not only followed him because of his success, they loved his free-spirited  attitude and his unconventional actions. This also the skiing star to turn into a media scandal, in the 06’  Olympics at Turin he refused to stay in the athletes village. He also voiced his opinion on the U.S. ski teams logo, (“Best In the World”). Even his placing at the Turin Olympics was a mess after his past triumphs, failing to medal, and crashing in three of the five events. But to him it was all about getting to “Party and socialize at an Olympic level”, one of his most criticized quote from the athlete. Many people and fans were upset that Miller failed to take the level of seriousness and achievement that the Olympic nature came with.

Nearing his 36th birthday, Bode Miller is thinking of the future and the past as well. With retirement looming closer and closer for him, most fans of the American racer think back to his past years, not including the loss of the 2012 season due to a knee surgery, he has achieved many lengths most racers cant say they have. When he burst onto the scene in 1998 and first represented the U.S. in the ’98 Olympics in Nagano and placed a mere 98th. He caught the worlds eye in 2002 at the Salt Lake City Olympics, where he placed 2nd in the Combined and Giant Slalom (GS) events. With an amazing follow-up, Miller won 4 World Cup titles form 2003 to 2005. People not only followed him because of his success, they loved his free-spirited  attitude and his unconventional actions. This also the skiing star to turn into a media scandal, in the 06’  Olympics at Turin he refused to stay in the athletes village. He also voiced his opinion on the U.S. ski teams logo, (“Best In the World”). Even his placing at the Turin Olympics was a mess after his past triumphs, failing to medal, and crashing in three of the five events. But to him it was all about getting to “Party and socialize at an Olympic level”, one of his most criticized quote from the athlete. Many people and fans were upset that Miller failed to take the level of seriousness and achievement that the Olympic nature came with.

Then came one of the most shocking events to take place in ski history, Bode Miller announced in 2007 that he was going to leave the U.S. Ski Team and ski as an individual for the U.S. and followed the footsteps of Kristina Koznick who left the team in 2000. This was an unheard of thing to do in skiing, and few skiers ever have. In 2008 he won for the fifth time in Norway and was able to close within 5 points of the leading champion Didier Cuche, and was crowned at the end of the season the overall champion. In 2009 he was unable to win any races, a first for him in over 8 years, and then suffered a torn ligament in his left ankle and was out of racing for over 4 weeks. Later on in the season he began to hint at retirement during an interview saying “sometimes the fire just burns out”. A new star from the American team showed up in the form of Lindsey Vonn, who gave a show stopping performance in the Vancouver Olympics. But Miller wasn’t done showing his talent, and gave an impressive performance, winning a medal of every colour, and wining a total of 5 medals, the most in U.S. Olympic history for skiing. He went on to win his 33rd World Cup title in Beaver Creek in 2011, but then had  surgery on his left knee and missed the entire 12-13 season.

During the summer he accompanied the U.S. team to Chile for training for the 13-14 season, and says he feels ready for competition later this month. He claims the break was good for him and says his expectations for Sochi are very high. As a fan of Miller myself, I am looking forward to see if all the hype towards his much anticipated return to the World Cup circuit. Will Vonn have an even greater return after destroying her ACL and MCL and  fractured a bone in her leg as well. Will Bode retire after this year? Only time will tell how the World Cup will play out, and how the Olympics might open up a new bloodbath for athletes to achieve their dreams, and represent their country on a global scale.