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SCHOCH Philipp
SCHOCH Philipp

Philipp SCHOCH

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Swiss snowboard supremo

Phillip Schoch’s parallel giant slalom victory over his brother Simon in 2006 saw him become the first man to successfully defend an Olympic snowboarding crown.

Sibling rivalry

On 22 February 2006, during the parallel giant slalom event at the Olympic Winter Games in Turin, Swiss brothers Simon and Philipp Schoch cruised through their respective rounds to face each other in the final. It was Philipp who emerged victorious over two legs, defending the title he first won in Salt Lake City in 2002. This family combat was only the third time in Winter Olympic history that two brothers have scooped the gold and silver in the same event, after John and Jennison Heaton (USA) in the skeleton at Saint-Moritz 1928 and twins Phil and Steve Mahre in the slalom at Sarajevo 1984. Philipp Schoch’s triumph, the first time a competitor had won gold at two Olympic Games since snowboarding’s introduction at Nagano 1998, established him as one of the sport’s all-time greats.

Brothers in sport

At the 2007 World Championships in Arosa (SUI), it was Simon’s turn to gain the upper hand in the ongoing sibling rivalry, as he defeated Phillip in the final of the parallel giant slalom. The two brothers, who are separated by just one year, were encouraged by their father to take up sport at an early age. They both showed promise in other disciplines – Phillip in ‘Schwingen’ (Swiss wrestling) and Simon in mountain biking – before concentrating their energies fully on snowboarding and taking the international circuit by storm.

Upsetting the odds

In Deer Valley, the Utah resort that staged the snowboarding events at the 2002 Games, Schoch, then 23, was not considered one of the favourites for the parallel giant slalom. He had no stand-out results to speak of at World Cup level and had only just advanced to the elimination round, qualifying 15th out of 16. But on 15 February, the native of Winthertur, Zurich (SUI) would prove the bookmakers wrong. Piling early pressure on his adversaries at each stage of the elimination round – Alexander Maier (AUT) in the last 16, Mathieu Bozzetto (FRA) in the quarters and Chris Klug (USA) in the semis – proved a productive tactic, as he suddenly found himself vying for a gold medal. However, his opponent in the final, Sweden’s Richard Richardsson, was too strong in the first leg. But then, in the second instalment of the duel, the Swede wiped out and failed to finish. Schoch, unaware that his opponent was no longer in contention, remained entirely focused until the finish line, before bursting into emotional celebrations. His victory provided Switzerland with its third gold medal of the Games, following Simon Amman’s double success in the ski jumping.



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Final Parallel Giant Slalom - Mens Snowboard

BARDONECCHIA, ITALY - FEBRUARY 22: (FRANCE OUT) Philipp Schoch of Switzerland and Simon Schoch of Switzerland in the Mens Snowboard Parallel Giant Slalom Finals on Day 12 of the 2006 Turin Winter Olympic Games on February 22, 2006 in Bardonecchia, Italy. (Photo by Agence Zoom/Getty Images)
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Day 12 Parallel Giant Slalom - Mens Snowboard medals

TURIN, ITALY - FEBRUARY 22: Philipp Schoch of Switzerland receives the Gold medal (left) with his brother Simon Schoch of Switzerland who receives the Silver medal (right) in the Mens Snowboard Parallel Giant Slalom Final at the Medals Plaza on Day 11 of the 2006 Turin Winter Olympic Games on February 21, 2006 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Stephen Munday/Getty Images)
play SB M Para Event/225 SB M Para Event_,0200,0400,0600,1200,1800,.mp4.csmil/master.m3u8

Turin 2006 Snowboard men Giant parallel slalom

The decision in the Snowboard Men's Giant Parallel Slalom at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Turin was a family matter: Philipp Schoch faced his brother Simon Schoch on the slope of the course in Bardonecchia. The start proved decisive in determining who would win gold.
play SB M Para Gold/226 SB M Para Gold_,0200,0400,0600,1200,1800,.mp4.csmil/master.m3u8

Swiss Schoch Brothers Capture Gold and Silver

Swiss Philipp Schoch successfully retains his parallel giant slalom Olympic title, becoming the first snowboarder to win 2 gold medals in the winter Games. Philipp faces his brother, Simon Schoch in the two-run final, gaining a lead of .88 seconds in the first leg to capture gold. Simon Schoch takes the silver medal home and Siegfried Grabner the bronze. Snowboard Parallel Giant Slalom Men's Final - Turin 2006 Winter Olympics - Philipp Schoch (SUI), Simon Schoch (SUI), Siegfried Grabner (AUT)

Philipp Schoch's steady and flawless performance

Along with curling, snowboarding was a new event on the Olympic schedule at Nagano, Japan in 1998 and it has been providing some of the Games’ highlights ever since. Not least when Swiss snowboarder Philipp Schoch seized his moment in the limelight in spectacular style in the parallel giant slalom at the Park City Mountain Resort.


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OLY W Parallel GS Final X

15 Feb 2002: Philipp Schoch of Switzerland competes in the Women's Parallel Giant Slalom Snowboarding Final at the Park City Mountain Resort during the Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games in Utah. DIGITAL IMAGE. \ Mandatory Credit: Al Bello/Getty Images


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