One of the greatest alpine skiers of the last 4-5 years is Norway's Aksel Lund Svindal. He has won World Championship and Olympic medals (many of them gold) in Slalom, Giant Slalom, Combined, Downhill and Super-G. Born December 26, 1982, the 27-year-old raked in a gold, a silver and a bronze in Vancouver. He got his first pair of skis when he was just 3; His mother died giving birth when he was 8. On his site he lists some of the places around the world that are important to him: New York (he goes every spring to visit friends); Dubai (with the indoor ski slope - I've been, there's not much to it); and Vail/Beaver Creek, which he says is one of the greatest downhill courses in the world.
We have some pics and his video tribute to Michael Jackson (a must-see!). You can follow Aksel on Twitter.
Hat tip to David S.