He may be small in stature, but Kucera has already left a huge mark on the sport of ski racing. The five-foot-nine dynamo made history by winning the world downhill championship in 2009. The Calgary native, who is famed for his work ethic and determination, doesn't come from a privileged background; his parents emigrated to Canada from the former Czechoslovakia in the early 1980s. The Canadian Cowboy won his first World Cup race on his home hill, when he claimed super-G gold at Lake Louise in 2006. Kucera returned to racing in 2012 after recovering from a long-term leg injury. When he's not on the ski hill, Kucera loves to ride dirt bikes.
1st – Downhill - World Alpine Championships - Val d'Isere, FRA (2009)
2nd - Super-G – FIS World Cup - Lake Louise, CAN (2008)
1st - Super-G – FIS World Cup - Lake Louise, CAN (2006)
World Cup ranking
|Ski club:||Calgary Alpine Racing Club|
Nicknames: Johnny, Johnny K, Kuchy
Best moment in ski racing: It’s a toss-up between my win at Lake Louise, Alta. (in 2006) and my world championship win (2009).
Worst moment in ski racing: Probably my injury at Lake Louise (in 2009).
What one thing would you change about ski racing? Right now, probably some of the safety stuff. I’d like to make it safer.
Best World Cup stop: Really and truly, it’s Lake Louise, just because it’s a home hill with home fans. The other one I really like is Wengen, Switzerland. The landscape of the course is a lot of fun.
Person you look up to most in ski racing: Hermann Maier and Daron Rahlves. Hermann Maier, because he came back from injury and Daron Rahlves, because he’s a small guy and one of the best. Both are just fearless guys.
On your iPod: Tons of country, classic rock.
Favourite movie: Wedding Crashers, The Hangover.
Hockey team: That’s easy – the Calgary Flames.
If you could have dinner with anyone, living or dead, who would it be? Jason Lapierre. He was a ski coach and one of my best friends. He was killed in a crash in July 2006.
Something no-one knows about you: I have a passion for dirt biking.
Favourite activities other than skiing: Dirt biking, camping.
If a movie was made about your life, who should play the lead role? I don’t know – that’s my answer. And I don’t care!
What’s a talent you wish you had? I would like to be more musically-inclined.
If you weren’t a skier what would you be? I would enjoy being a ski coach.
Funniest thing you’ve seen in ski racing: (Teammate) Robbie Dixon at a hot dog eating contest. He was horrible but it was a hell of a good time!
Most embarrassing moment: I’ve had many embarrassing moments but can’t think of one in particular.
Describe yourself in three words: Hard-working, determined, easy-going.
2nd – Super-G – Lake Louise, Alta. (Nov. 2008)
3rd – Super-G – Val Gardena-Groeden, ITA (Dec. 2006)
1st – Super-G – Lake Louise, Alta. (Nov. 2006)
Finishes in the top 10
6th – Downhill – Lake Louise, Alta. (Nov. 2009)
7th – Downhill – Are, SWE (March 2009)
8th – Downhill – Kvitfjell, NOR (March 2009)
7th – Downhill – Kvitfjell, NOR (March 2009)
6th – Combined – Kitzbuehel, AUT (Jan. 2008)
5th – Super-G – Kitzbuehel, AUT (Jan. 2008)
10th – Downhill – Bormio, ITA (Dec. 2007)
4th – Giant slalom – Alta Badia, ITA (Dec. 2007)
6th – Giant slalom – Beaver Creek, USA (Dec. 2007)
7th – Super-G – Lake Louise, Alta. (Nov. 2007)
7th – Downhill – Lake Louise, Alta. (Nov. 2007)
5th – Giant Slalom – Alta Badia, ITA (Dec. 2006)
2006 Olympic Winter Games – Turin, ITA
17th – Combined
22nd – Super-G
27th – Downhill
Canadian champion – Giant slalom – Mt. St. Anne, Que. (March 2009)
Canadian champion – Downhill – Whistler, B.C. (March 2008)
Canadian champion – Super-G – Whistler, B.C. (March 2008)
Canadian champion – Super combined – Whistler, B.C. (March 2008)
Canadian champion – Super-G – Whistler, B.C. (March 2006)
Canadian champion – Giant slalom – Whistler, B.C. (March 2006)
Canadian champion – Downhill – Le Massif, Que. (March 2005)
Canadian champion – Super-G – Le Massif, Que. (March 2005)
FIS World Ski Championship
World champion – Downhill – Val d’Isere, FRA (Feb. 2009)
6th – Super-G – Val d’Isere, FRA (Feb. 2009)
44th – Giant slalom – Val d’Isere, FRA (Feb. 2009)
12th – Giant slalom – Are, SWE (Feb. 2007)
30th – Super-G – Are, SWE (Feb. 2007)
31st – Downhill – Are, SWE (Feb. 2007)
32nd – Super combined – Are, SWE (Feb. 2007)
9th – Combined – Bormio, ITA (Feb. 2005)
16th – Downhill – Bormio, ITA (Feb. 2005)
25th – Super-G – Bormio, ITA (Feb. 2005)
Men’s overall champion (2005)
Downhill men’s champion (2005)
Super-G men’s champion (2005)