Olympics: Puchner to replace Reichelt for Austrian ski team

Austria will take speed skier Joachim Puchner to Sochi after medal-hopeful Hannes Reichelt had to drop out at the last minute due to a back injury.

Puchner, 26, will be one of 22 skiers sent by Austria to the Olympic Games on February 7-23, the maximum quota allowed per competing nation.

His Olympic ticket comes after Reichelt announced Monday, just two days after winning the prestigious Kitzbuehel downhill, that he would miss Sochi and the rest of the season due to a spinal disc problem requiring surgery.

Austria will send a record 130-strong contingent to the Games.

Women's alpine skiing team:

Anna Fenninger, Elisabeth Goergl, Nicole Hosp, Cornelia Huetter, Michaela Kirchgasser, Bernadette Schild, Marlies Schild, Nicole Schmidhofer, Regina Sterz, Kathrin Zettel

Men's alpine skiing team:

Romed Baumann, Max Franz, Reinfried Herbst, Marcel Hirscher, Klaus Kroell, Mario Matt, Matthias Mayer, Joachim Puchner, Benjamin Raich, Philipp Schoerghofer, Georg Streitberger, Otmar Striedinger