"Tomba la Bomba's" influence came through his total domination of the ski racing world in the late 80s and early 90s. He won three Olympic gold medals, two silver medals, a slalom World Championship, and 50 victories on the World Cup. It all started when at age 21, he beat his idol, Ingemar Stenmark in GS at the World Cup in Sestriere, Italy.
Tomba's influence on the ski world also comes through his trademark Italian swagger. With his jet-black greased-back hair and Roman good looks, "la Bomba" never had trouble finding a party or a woman. The spotlight and his success on the podium gave Tomba a well-known ego, as he claimed being "the new messiah of skiing."
Egos aside, Tomba's unique slalom style and large frame are really what revolutionized the event. Instead of letting his skis come apart in the "skating step" between turns, Tomba kept them tight together, which created smoother turns. Other athletes have since followed his footsteps between the gates and off the slopes.