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60 Second Interview Martin Bell


I was fortunate enough to catch up with skiing legend and member Martin Bell last week, who kindly agreed to provide us with this exclusive 60 second interview!

Throughout the 80’s and 90’s Martin and his brother Graham were Great Britain’s most successful skiers. During his career Martin competed in an impressive 5 World Cup Championships and 4 Winter Olympics.


Martin so good to see you again!


1) You have made your home in the States. What prompted the move and will we ever see you living back in the UK?
I married an American in 1999, and have lived over there since then, first in Vail, Colorado, then in Taos, New Mexico, and for the past 6 years in Big Sky, Montana. I am enjoying living in the Rocky Mountains, with no immediate plans to move back to the UK - but I suppose you can never say never.


2) Of course Snow Voles are indigenous to Europe. Have you ever seen the North American cousin the North American Brown Lemming?
No, but where I live now I get to see grizzly bears, moose, elk and coyotes.


3) So what do are doing work wise nowadays?
I instruct and coach in Big Sky, but also work as the Equipment Editor for Daily Mail Ski & Snowboard magazine, and run kids' courses in Zermatt for Powder Byrne.


4) So you were telling me about your daughter Reece, sounds like she’s definitely following in the famous Bell footsteps, tell us about her achievements this year?
So far, she is mainly just racing locally in Montana, where she has won several races in her age group. You can follow her progress at


5) Wow sounds like she is coming on great guns. If she progresses far enough will we be able to claim her for GB?
She has dual nationality, but will probably race for Britain when she registers internationally - at the age of 15.


6) So coming back to your career which was your favourite downhill course and why?
Val Gardena, because of all the jumps and rollers. Also, the scenery and the food were top-notch!


7) On reflection what would you have done better, and what advice could you pass on to any aspiring ski racers out there?
I would have worked harder on my relationship with the ski manufacturers that sponsored me - it is so important to get hold of the best possible equipment.


8) You are still the UK’s most successful downhiller. Do you see the prospect of any of our up and coming crop taking that mantle away from you?
Ed Drake and Dougie Crawford both showed a lot of promise, but their careers have been blighted by injury. TJ Baldwin is an aggressive downhill and super G skier and I will be watching him with interest. In slalom, Dave Ryding has been getting some impressive wins in FIS races. On the women's side, there is quite a gap below Chemmy and we'll have to wait a while to see how the young talent develops. (By the way, I would argue that Divina Galica, in the early 70s, was Britain's most successful downhiller - she had far more top 10 World Cup results than I did.)


9) What was the worst point of your career and why?

At Wengen in 1991 when a young Austrian racer suffered fatal injuries in a crash on the final jump.


10) I once got caught out, during an SIGB Ski Test between you, Andrew Freshwater and your brother’s competitiveness. I found myself in a “Chinese Downhill” which I came a very woeful 4th! Can you describe for the readers what a “Chinese Downhill” is?
A mass start, top-to-bottom race with no control gates - long before skiercross, which is sort of a modern equivalent. As kids, we used to race Chinese Downhills down the Hillend dry slope, using the "elbow" section of the slope.


Thanks Martin! Looking forward to seeing you on soon!

VinceTheSnowVole · 2120 days ago
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60 Second Interview Martin Bell