Norwegians were mourning the loss this week of alpine skier Finn Christian Jagge, who won Olympic gold at Albertville in 1992 and was considered “a legend” among Norway’s downhill racers. Jagge’s wife reported that he’d fallen suddenly ill and died at Ullevål University Hospital in Oslo.
Details of the illness weren’t immediately released. Left behind were shocked former colleagues and competitors, who viewed Jagge as a role model and leader when Norwegian alpine skiers began taking over the winners’ podium in 30 years ago.
“This is terribly sad, he was a young 54-year-old who was still so active,” one of the Norway’s other legendary downhill racers, Kjetil André Aamodt, told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK). “He was a unique athlete, good in several sports, also tennis. In the alpine world, he was a legend.”
Top sports officials were also paying tribute to the skier popularly known as “Finken:” “Jagge crowned an impressive career with Olympic gold in Albertville, when he beat another legend, Alberto Tomba,” Berit Kjøll, president of Norway’s national athletics association, told TV2. “He was a great role model for our young and promising athletes. Jagge will be deeply missed.”