On 5 February 2005, he finished eleventh in the Men's Downhill event at the World Championships held in Bormio, Italy. This was the best result by a British man in the history of the World Championships, and the best in any major competition since Martin Bell finished eighth in the downhill at the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary.
Mickel sustained several injuries during his career including a fractured left ankle, ruptured right Achilles tendon and right ankle fracture and a fracture to his right tibia plateau. Although he recovered from each of these setbacks, he announced his retirement from the sport in May 2009 at the age of 31. He had been a member of the British Alpine ski team for 12 years and is now coaching the Scottish Alpine Team.