Switzerland's Marco Odermatt holds the alpine ski World Cup overall...

Switzerland's Marco Odermatt holds the alpine ski World Cup overall title trophy, left, and the trophies for downhill, super-G and giant slalom disciplines as he celebrates on the podium, in Saalbach, Austria, Sunday, March 24, 2024. Credit: AP/Marco Trovati

SAALBACH-HINTERGLEMM, Austria — Swiss standout Marco Odermatt earned his fourth World Cup crystal globe of the season Sunday in anticlimactic circumstances as the final race was canceled due to bad weather.

Odermatt's first downhill title saw the 26-year-old become only the fourth male skier to win four classifications in one season and the first since Hermann Maier did it in 2001.

“Something very special,” Odermatt said. “I spoke to Hermann two years ago in summer, when I won my first globes and he told me it is cool when you can’t hold all the globes. So I think this will be a good feeling.”

Odermatt locked up his third straight overall championship and the giant slalom title weeks ago and lifted the super-G crystal globe on Friday.

The start of the men’s downhill on Sunday was initially pushed back several times because of snow and wind, while organisers continued to work on the course in Saalbach, Austria. But it was officially canceled more than an hour after it was scheduled to start.

“Unfortunately due to the present weather situation with wind and snowfall affecting the track conditions, to insure the safety of the athletes, todays Men’s DH had been cancelled,” the ski federation said on X, formerly Twitter.

The cancellation handed Odermatt yet another crystal globe as his 42-point lead over French skier Cyprien Sarrazin, the only man who could catch him in the standings, proved enough.

Switzerland's Marco Odermatt holds up the trophy for the men's...

Switzerland's Marco Odermatt holds up the trophy for the men's World Cup super-G discipline, in Saalbach, Austria, Friday, March 22, 2024. Credit: AP/Alessandro Trovati

But it denied him the chance to set a men's record points total. Victory in the downhill would have given Odermatt 100 points and lifted him five points beyond his record 2,042 tally set last season.

“For sure it’s very strange to win a globe after such a tight battle with Cyprien,” Odermatt said. “We both would have been ready for every decision. We saw it on the inspection. I’m not sure safety can be guaranteed. It’s a good decision for sure from my side, but I think as well for the sport it was a fair decision. But we would have liked to battle it out.

“It was a strange season with some cancellations but we had a very good January and February, high quality races, very cool medals, and if you are leader going into the final week, you deserve the globe. It was a lot of waiting, but I always felt really good and motivated to race.”

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde had won the downhill crystal globe the previous two years but his season was prematurely ended when he was among a slew of World Cup, Olympic and world champions to crash hard in a packed January program.

Switzerland's Marco Odermatt holds the alpine ski World Cup overall...

Switzerland's Marco Odermatt holds the alpine ski World Cup overall title trophy, left, as he celebrates with the gold medals and the trophies for downhill, super-G and giant slalom disciplines, on the podium, in Saalbach, Austria, Sunday, March 24, 2024. Credit: AP/Alessandro Trovati

It was nevertheless a remarkable season for Sarrazin, who won four races. His only previous race win was in 2017 and the 29-year-old had never placed higher than 15th in any classification.

“For safety it was a good decision, so there is no problem,” Sarrazin said about the race cancellation. “I wanted to have a fair race and a safe race and that’s how it is. We will enjoy tonight because it was an amazing season.

“I’m really happy. I’m proud of me. I never stopped believing. It was an amazing journey. For the young guys, if they watch me, they can see you never stop believing ... I can’t wait to continue the journey.”

Sunday's weather was a contrast to the women's downhill, which took place under blue skies and with a temperature of 15 degrees Celsius (59 degrees Fahrenheit) the previous day.

Odermatt's compatriot Lara Gut-Behrami was also chasing a quadruple but Cornelia Huetter pipped her to the downhill title for her first crystal globe.

More Olympics

SUBSCRIBE

Unlimited Digital AccessOnly 25¢for 5 months

ACT NOWSALE ENDS SOON | CANCEL ANYTIME