Thomas Alsgaard : biography
Thomas Alsgaard (born 10 January 1972) is a Norwegian cross-country skier. Alsgaard is regarded by many as the best performer of the skate-style in cross-country skiing and many of today’s best skiers have studied his technique. In total, Alsgaard won 15 medals in the Winter Olympics and FIS Nordic World Ski Championships, making him one of the most successful skiers of all time.
Alsgaard retired from racing in 2003. He now works as a technical advisor for Alpina Sports, working in the Nordic boot department. He used to ski on Madshus skis, one of Alpina’s partners, with Adidas boots and Salomon bindings.
He is also known as a sports commentator for the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation.
In the Norwegian Championship in January 2011, Alsgaard took a sensational bronze medal at the 15 km classical individual race, defeating many skiers on the Norwegian World Cup team. He was only beaten by Eldar Rønning (gold) and Martin Johnsrud Sundby (silver). He repeated the feat in 2012, expressing frustration with the lack of aggressiveness and initiative in both the younger elite athletes and the team surrounding them.
Born in Flateby, Enebakk, Alsgaard began cross-country ski racing at the age of three. That was when he was entered into a race against many 5-year olds. He beat all of them. A year later, it was rumored that he was lost in the village the family lived in. In fact, he was found at the local ski area, just about to start his third time around a 9-kilometer loop. Alsgaard says that his passion for skiing comes from liking to be outdoors.
Alsgaard got his international breakthrough in the Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympics winning the 30 kilometre freestyle event. In total, Alsgaard won 15 medals in the Winter Olympics and FIS Nordic World Ski Championships, making him one of the most successful skiers of all time. Alsgaard retired from racing after the 2003 World Championships.
He won the Holmenkollen medal in 2001 (shared with Adam Małysz and Bente Skari).