He said he had been asked every day if his career would be complete without an Olympic gold. "Now the questions is zzzzzzit - deleted".
Hirscher's combined two-run time was 0.23 seconds faster than silver medalist Alexis Pinturault of France.
"It was an unbelievable downhill, maybe my best downhill ever".
Hirscher stretched toward the finish line in a star shape with his left ski high off the snow.
And while Hirscher himself has insisted all along he did not need to burnish his legacy, he sure did look pleased when he leapt atop the podium, then pumped both arms overhead, during a flower ceremony.
The two Frenchman won the only two combined events run on the World Cup circuit this year but Pinturault admitted that when it comes to slalom Hirscher is in a league of his own.
In this context, Hirscher has only conceded to 1.32 second in the speed event, won in 1:19,24 by the young German Thomas Dressen, already victor of the downhill flagship of Kitzbühel in January. His 55 World Cup race wins is second on the all-time men's list. This is his third Olympics, but the only previous medal was a slalom silver in 2014.
Hirscher has launched ideally his campaign, before the giant slalom that it will be a big favorite.
Numerous best downhillers failed to finish, finding the slalom gates they rarely race too much to handle.
The Salzbourgeois was all the more deserved its success as the wind chased the snow during its passage in the slalom, to the point you can no longer see spatulas.
Two-time Olympic champion Ted Ligety of the USA, beleaguered by injuries the past few seasons - a torn ACL followed by back surgery - finished fifth. In fact, because of the wind, the downhill start was given from the super-G, the lowest, and the jumps removed or mitigated. His specialty is the slalom and giant slalom events. Racers topped 75 miles per hour (120 kph) but were guided to a safer line cresting the jumps.
"Ted and I have been together a long time, and we've been in this situation before, where you go down and it's your first race of a championship and you didn't express yourself in the way that you can", USA men's coach Sasha Rearick said. The Russian slid into the safety fences and bloodied his mouth.
So Hirscher went into the downhill merely hoping to be within 3 seconds of the lead going into the slalom; he wound up less than 1½ seconds behind, the beneficiary of catching a lull in swirling winds.
France hadn't had a top-three finish in a men's Olympic combined race in 70 years, let alone a pair of medals on the same afternoon. Traditionalists like the mix of skills, but racers are now so specialized that those good at one discipline tend not to be competitive at the other.
Svindal, a two-time world champion in combined, has not skied a competitive slalom run in two years. Hirscher nearly never races downhills, but he put down a good one on Tuesday.
"I want to fight to prove my innocence because I don't remember (taking the drug) and it's incomprehensible", he said in a statement.While Kim's brilliant run in the halfpipe stole the show, gold medals also went to Sweden and Norway in cross country skiing, and Italy in short-track speedskating.