Saturday, March 17, 2018

Mikaela Shiffrin Wins Last World Cup Slalom

Mikaela Shiffrin won a career-best seventh slalom of the season on Saturday in impressive fashion, leading the field by over 1.5 seconds, at the Audi FIS World Cup Finals in Åre, Sweden. It was the American's fourth slalom victory –the most among women – at the Swedish resort that will host the 2019 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships. She also finished the day by collecting her fifth slalom crystal globe that was mathematically secured in Ofterschwang last week.
Wendy Holdener of Switzerland attacked the second run to move from fifth after the first run into the runner-up position for the race and also the discipline standings. Frida Hansdotter of Sweden finished third on the day and also moved onto the standings podium in third place, much to the delight of local fans.

Marcel Hirscher Wins Last World Cup Giant Slalom

The races at the World Cup Finals in Are went into the last round and both the cup and the race win went to Austria's Marcel Hirscher.
As for most of the season, the battle at the top of the giant slalom rankings is between Marcel Hirscher and Henrik Kristoffersen. Despite a mistake in the first run, the Austrian could take the lead in the first run and hold on going into a shortened second run. With this he claimed his 13th win of the season, equalling a record set by Ingemar Stenmark and Hermann Maier. He also won 11 of the last 12 races in that discipline, what allowed him to earn his 5th crystal globe in giant slalom.
The fastest man in the second run was Henrik Kristoffersen! The Norwegian, who has celebrated 11-second places this season, was able to beat Marcel Hirscher in the second run, but still ended in second place, +0.23 off the winning pace. Kristoffersen consolidated his second place in the giant slalom season ranking, proving that he made a big step in that discipline this season.
In third place, Victor Muffat-Jeandet grabs his first giant slalom podium of the season. The French athlete had his breakthrough two seasons ago but struggled to score podiums last season and at the beginning of 2017/18. In Wengen, with his first World Cup win in alpine combined, things changed and he could carry on winning an Olympic bronze medal in that discipline and now enjoy the third place in giant slalom, his 7th in career.
Another Frenchman finished in the third place of the season ranking in giant slalom. It’s the only man that was able to win a race in Marcel Hirscher’s long winning streak; Alexis Pinturault. With his win in Val d’Isère and solid results throughout the season, including three third spots, he was able to climb on the cup podium for the sixth consecutive year.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Sweden Wins Nations Team Event in Åre.

The winner of the alpine team event at Åre World Cup Finals came down to the very last run as Andre Myhrer of Sweden bested Julien Lizeroux of France for the overall victory. Sweden matched its success in the event at last year's Finals when it beat out Germany. This year, Germany had to settle for third.
Sweden became the third country to win this event at consecutive World Cup Finals after Austria won back-to-back in 2006-2007 and Switzerland won three in a row from 2014 to 2016. Sweden also joined Austria (2012 Schladming) and Switzerland (2016 St. Moritz, 2014 Lenzerheide) in winning this event on home snow at the World Cup Finals.
After finishing fourth in the event at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games, France was out for revenge and succeeded in advancing to the big final on a strong team performance. The Swedes proved just a bit stronger, bolstered by the support of the crowd. Germany bested Austria in the small final to claim the last podium position in third.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Vincent Kriechmayr Wins Last Super-G of the Season in Åre. Kjetil Jansrud Takes the Super-G Globe

Today's super-g at the World Cup Finals in Åre saw Vincent Kriechmayr win again, just one day after he took the downhill. The season's standings were already decided after the super-g race in Kvitfjell, where Kjetil Jansrud clinched the globe in front of his home crowd.
Due to the wind, the start of the super-g had to be lowered to the giant slalom start, but the race could be held in fair conditions. Vincent Kriechmayr had his breakthrough this season and could confirm his excellent shape in the two final races that he won, to bring his statistic to xx world cup wind, while he started the season with 0.
Christoph Innerhofer finished his season on a positive note with a second place in the super-g. Lots of very fast sections, lots of very fast training runs, but the Italian wasn't able to bring it down and claim that podium placement.
Two athletes were tied in third place: Aksel Lund Svindal and Thomas Dressen. The Norwegian took an impressive 77th career podium and the young German celebrates his first podium in the super-g.
While the first place of the season standings was fixed since Kjetil Jansrud’s win in the super-g in Kvitfjell, the other positions on the podium were still up to grab, with lots of potential contenders. With today’s win, Austria’s Vincent Kriechmayr was able to earn enough points to take the second spot on the podium. Aksel Lund Svindal rounds out the podium, he takes a season medal for the 21st in his career.

Sofia Goggia Wins World Cup Supe-G in Åre. Tina Weirather Claims her Second Consecutive Super-G Globe

Tina Weirather of Liechtenstein successfully defended her super-G crystal globe on Thursday at World Cup Finals in Åre, Sweden. With the decision coming down to the last race of the season, Weirather finished sixth in the race as her globe rival Lara Gut of Switzerland failed to complete the course. Gut ultimately finished second in the discipline standings and Anna Veith of Austria was third.
In the day's race, Sofia Goggia of Italy won her first super-G of the season with an attacking run, 0.32 seconds ahead of Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany. Lindsey Vonn rounded out the podium in third just over a half second behind Goggia.
Wind on the top of the slope forced organizers to use the reserve start for the race. However, the excitement was still high for the discipline standings as well as the competition, and the race podium was filled with skiers from bib 16-19. Olympic gold medallist Ester Ledecka started last, but she skied off course after a fast top section.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Matthias Mayer and Vincent Kriechmayr Wins Last Downhill of the Season in Åre. Beat Feuz Claims her Career First Crystal Globe

In Austria, a downhill win has a particular value in the World Cup and so far the Austrian athletes were not able to clinch that victory in the fastest discipline. But today, they even scored a double, with Matthias Mayer and Vincent Kriechmary ex-aequo in the first place. With his thrid place of the day, Beat Feuz secured the first World Cup globe of his career.
There have been some Austrian successes in the speed disciplines this season. Together, Matthias Mayer, Hannes Reichelt, Vincent Kriechmayr and Max Franz scored not less than 12 podiums, including Kriechmayr’s win in the super-g in Beaver Creek. In addition to that, the Olympic title of super-g went to Matthias Mayer. However, the Austrians can’t explain themselves happy without a downhill win. And this win came in the very last race of the season, with not only one athlete at the top of the podium, but two, tied for the win. Vincent Kriechmayr celebrates his first success in downhill, while Matthias Mayr claims his 5th World Cup win, the 3rd in downhill.
In third place today at the downhill in Are, Switzerland’s Beat Feuz was relieved. Not only because it’s another podium for him this season, the 7th in downhill, but because this consistence allowed him to clinch the first crystal globe in his career. Being the 2018 Audi FIS Ski World Cup Downhill winner means a lot to Beat Feuz, especially after he missed three globes, including the Overall, for only 25 points back in 2012.
Throughout the season, the main contender of Beat Feuz was the attacking Viking Aksel Lund Svindal. The Norwegian won the Olympic downhill, but also in Beaver Creek and in Val Gardena. With six podiums this season, he trailed Beat Feuz all the way to the very end of the season but had to give up the dream of holding his 12th globe after his performance in today’s race.
The last spot on the podium standings goes to younggun Thomas Dressen. The German, who had the honour to win both the Kitzbuehel and the Kvitfjell downhills, had his breakthrough this season and proved to be very constant. His best season ranking at this point was his 25th place in downhill last season.

Lindsey Vonn Wins World Cup Downhill in Åre. Sofia Goggia Claims her Career First Crystal Globe

Lindsey Vonn won her fourth consecutive World Cup downhill race on Wednesday during the World Cup Finals in Åre, Sweden, but her efforts proved just three points shy of overtaking Sofia Goggia in the downhill discipline standings. The 33-year-old did still claim her 82nd World Cup title, moving four wins shy of Stenmark's record of 86 career World Cup wins.
Sofia Goggia claimed her career-first crystal globe with the downhill discipline title after finishing second in the standings the previous season.
The athletes competed on a shortened track due to weather allowing for only a single training run from a lowered start. Organizers attempted to hold a second training run on the morning of the race from higher up on the slope, but wind and snowfall early in the day made this impossible.
Goggia took the early lead in a race that maintained its intensity all the way to the final finisher. Once Vonn came down in the lead by a tight 0.06 seconds, any skier who finished between the American and the Italian had the chance to alter the globe standings. Both Vonn and Goggia watched in anticipation. In the end, Vonn's teammate Alice McKennis with bib 23 nearly bumped Goggia but crossed the finish line in third to have no effect on the standings.
Sofia Goggia, the Olympic gold medallist in downhill, referred to the globe as a dream come true.

Monday, March 12, 2018

36th Allalin-Races in Saas-Fee

On March 16 and 17 2018, the 36th edition of the Allalin Races takes place in Saas-Fee. The Allalin Races are the highest glacier races in the world and thus, a one-of-a-kind experience.
The nine kilometers long run overcomes 1800m of altitude and participants reach around 140km/h.
The Allalin Races in Saas-Fee belong to the 3 most popular amateur downhill races in Switzerland. The “Super Vier” amateur downhill series consists of the four races Belalp-Hexe, the Inferno Mürren, and the Allalin Races Saas-Fee. Every year the overall masters of the whole series will be announced. The award ceremony and the presentation of the much-coveted cup always take place at the Allalin Races in Saas-Fee as it is the last one of the series.

For over 30 years the Allalin Races and the famous afterparties attract ambitious amateur racers as well as winter sports fans who join the competition just for fun. Surrounded by the highest mountains in Switzerland the race starts at an altitude of 3600 meters above sea level and aims the village on only 1800 meters.
The challenging downhill race was mastered for the first time in 1946. Back than the participants had to hike up to the mountain hut on Längfluh, only to get up the next morning and hike further to the top of the Allalinhorn on 4027 meters. The following race down didn’t happen on perfectly prepared slopes like nowadays. No, they had to pass the dangerous crevasses while getting through powder snow.
Participants can enter four different categories: the Team Race, the Fun Team Race, the Him and Her Race, and the individual men’s or women’s races. Men and women in the individual races usually intent to aim the best time. The participants in the Fun Team Race descend just for fun at a leisurely pace. A pit-stop at a mountain restaurant along the way is almost mandatory and dressing up is actively encouraged. Apparently, in the past, a team has even plonked themselves down in the snow for a quick cheese fondue. It’s no wonder, then, that teams in this category have been known to take over five hours to “race” down to the finish line. By contrast, an ambitious, highly trained athlete can complete the course in less than five minutes!

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Kjetil Jansrud Takes Victory in Kvitfjell and the Super-G Globe

The last regular speed weekend came to an end today at Kvitfjell (NOR), with the Super-G on the Olympiabakken course.
Kjetil Jansrud’s domination in this year’s Super-G events continues and claimed the top step on the podium today in Kvitfjell. He crossed the finish line 0.22 seconds ahead of Beat Feuz and 0.33 ahead of Brice Roger.
The local hero Kjetil Jansrud kept his nerves under control and scored a 21st World Cup win, the 7th in front of his home crowd. With this win, he also secured the crystal globe in this discipline. Norwegian teammate Aksel Lund Svindal, failed to finish his run, enabling Jansrud to build a 134-point lead with only the season-ending race in Sweden remaining.
As yesterday in the downhill, Beat Feuz took second place, and a surprise guest ended in third place; Brice Roger grabbed his second career podium coming down with bib 49 in today's Super-G in Kvitfjell.

Winning Run Mickael Bimboes. Freeride World Tour 2018. Fieberbrunn, Austria

Mickael Bimboes (FRA-1st Place) claimed his first career FWT win and podium thanks to hard-charging big mountain confidence, perfectly stomped airs and a huge must-stick gap jump over the lower couloir, which has never been seen before in a competition on the “Wildseeloder” venue.