Olympic gold medalist Claudia Nystad has announced she has stepped down from professional cross-country skiing. Nystad’s career marked a very succesful period for the German Ski Association, as she captured not only five Olympic medals but also five from World Championships.
Eventually, the 32-year-old felt her triumph at the Olympic Games in Vancouver turn into another sensation.
“The Games in Vancouver were a highlight of my career,” said Claudia Nystad. “I’ve been thinking a lot in recent months and I found out that it is now time for me to start a new life. After Vancouver, it has become difficult for me to find motivation. ”
Nystad’s decision was not entirely unexpected, but was received with great regret.
“Claudia was one of the best athletes we have ever had with the German Ski Association [DSV],” said DSV Sport Director Thomas Pfüller. “The gap she leaves behind in our team will be for young athletes very difficult to close. Therefore, we would have appreciated it if she had continued for one or two years. However, we respect her decision and wish her success in future life. ”
Eight years after the team’s sensational gold in the women’s relay in Salt Lake City, Nystad together with her team mate Evi-Sachenbacher-Stehle delivered the biggest surprise of the Olympic Winter Games 2010 from the German perspective. In the team sprint, they rolled over the world’s elite and won a gold medal again!
Besides cross-country skiing, Nystad has studied graphic design, and was active in fundraising. In the summer of 2007, Nystad auctioned her Olympic relay gold from Salt Lake City for the benefit of a foundation for abused children. The medal was purchased by the Russian Olympic museum in Smolensk.
For the coming years, the Olympic and World champion has already set new priorities. Instead of endurance, technique and power there will be soon entirely different “sessions” in her timetable–Nystad wants to study Business.
Source: German Ski Federation