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Skier representing Mexico may be 'the most interesting man' in the Olympics

February 23, 2010 |  5:19 pm

Hubertus von Hohenlohe, wearing a big No. 103, missed a gold medal in Tuesday's men's giant slalom by almost 34 seconds.

He didn't finish last, though, and he didn't get out-dressed. Von Hohenlohe crossed the line in 78th place out of 81 finishers, wearing an Aztec-theme bodysuit with painted-on bandoleers and guns.

"The main part was looking good," he said. "Having style. Don't look at the time, but have style and look good in the suit. I think I won for artistic impression. It's a pity we get no marks for that, like in figure  skating."

Von Hohenlohe, for what it's worth, is Mexico's only representative at the Vancouver Games. Oh, he is also 51 years old and completed a GS that American star Bode Miller did not.

His occupation, as listed in his Olympic bio, is artist, businessperson, photographer. He rides Head skis, wears Lange boots, straps them into Tyrolia bindings and lists his idol as Andy Warhol.

Von Hohenlohe is quite a character, and he's not a joke -- at least he wasn't always one. This is his fifth Winter Olympics, and in 1984 he finished 38th in the downhill behind Bill Johnson.

Von Hohenlohe, aka "the Prince," is a descendant of German royalty but able to represent Mexico because he was born in Mexico City when his father was running a car plant. Von Hohenlohe's grandmother is also half-Mexican.

Von Hohenlohe lives in Vienna, and  spends only two or three weeks a year in Mexico, but that's not really the point, is it?

On Tuesday, he finished the men's GS -- and he looked marvelous.

-- Chris Dufresne in Whistler, Canada

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