Friday, January 19, 2018

Julia Mancuso Says Goodbye to the Alpine Skiing Competition in Cortina

Julia Mancuso announced that she has made the difficult decision to end her career after 18 years on the World Cup and today we have attended in Cortina to the last descent in the Alpine Ski World Cup of "Super Jules".
Dressed as Superwoman with a red cape tied around her neck Julia had her last race, at the site of her first world cup podium: a super-G second-place finish in Cortina, Italy.
Until today Julia Mancuso held out hope that she would qualify for her fifth Olympic Winter Games but the pain from a degenerative right hip has proved too much.
"It has been an epic battle with my hip injury, and the past three years I have put everything into returning to competition at the highest level and the goal to reach my fifth Olympic Games. There have been really promising days during this challenging process, and I have kept my spirits up despite many who questioned or doubted me (...) Sadly, I haven’t found the progression to compete with the best in the world again, but I’m proud to have fought until the very end. It is with a heavy heart that I say goodbye to ski racing, but I do so with a full heart", Mancuso said in a statement released by U.S. Ski & Snowboard.
In the 18 years since her first world cup race in 1999, Mancuso won more Olympic medals than any American woman in alpine skiing, with four -she won gold in giant slalom at the 2006 Turin Games, silver in downhill and combined at the 2010 Vancouver Games and bronze in combined at the 2014 Sochi Games-, and is tied with Lindsey Vonn for most global championship medals won by an American woman with nine. She has also stood on the world cup podium 36 times -7 times at the top of it- and started in 398 world cup races.
A talented multi-discipline skier, Mancuso won medals in Giant Slalom as well as the speed events of Downhill and Super-G. As evidence of her versatility, she earned two of her four Olympic medals in super combined.
"I really look forward to the next part of my skiing career, which will be exploring and adventuring through the mountains with my friends and hopefully do some more filming in the backcountry", Mancuso said. "I don't really look at it as ending a ski career. I just look at it as transitioning -- and I won't have to wake up quite as early, so that's nice".

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

78 International Hahnenkamm Race (Kitzbühel, Tirol, Austria)

The 78 International Hahnenkamm Race is one of the highlights of the ski racing season. From Friday 19th until Sunday 21st, January 2018 Kitzbühel will host three events of the Men's Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup: Super G, the famous Downhill on the Streif one of the most demanding runs of the FIS downhill calendar, and a Slalom. With a total prize money purse of 550,000 Euros and nearly 80,000 spectators expected during the weekend, the Hahnenkanmm races are by known as the most prestigious during the World Cup season. The Kitzbühel races are part of the Club 5+ Alpine Classics, a union of the leading alpine ski race organizers from all over the world. It was founded 1988 upon an idea of world cup founder and sports journalist Serge Lang. Charter members had been the “Five” downhill classic sites in the Alps”, Gardena/Gröden (ITA), Garmisch (GER), Kitzbühel (AUT), Wengen (SUI), Val d’Isere (FRA).Kitzbühel is one of Austria's best known and fanciest winter sports resorts. The city is situated along the river Kitzbühler Ache, and the car-free historic center is spectacular with cobbled streets and lovely medieval buildings.
The Kitzbühel Ski Paradise located at 800 meters above sea level, is conveniently embedded in the Kitzbüheler Horn, Bichlalm and Hahnenkamm mountain ranges offering 54 modern lifts, managed by the Bergbahn AG Kitzbüheland, serving 170 kilometres of ski runs (91 kilometres snow-covered) for all levels and abilities and 33 kilometres of signed ski routes.For 75 years, the annual Hahnenkamm race in Kitzbühel, Austria, has produced unforgettable triumphs and unspeakable tragedies, a heritage that is full of myths and legends. Nowhere else is skiing celebrated so intensely. The city, the nation, and the entire winter sports world go crazy for the battles that play out on the slopes, and the race down the Streif is the most anticipated event of all - the Superbowl of skiing.This thrilling feature documentary follows four athletes on their 12-month journey leading up to the most important ride of their career. Facing an adrenaline high and total loss of control. It gives rare insights into the minds of the athletes and their struggle between risk and reward.

Kitzbühel was selected as one of the Top 10 Most Beautiful Alpine Ski Resorts by the CNN..

The Hahnenkamm-Race is one of the highlights of the annual ski-racing calendar.
It is considered to be one of the most challenging downhill slopes in the world; the Streif. The supreme discipline of the alpine ski is held on Mount Hahnenkamm, hot on the heels of the Lauberhorn Races in Wengen, Switzerland – another of the great alpine ski classics. The race first took place on today’s Streif course in 1937. Austrian, Thaddäus Schwabl, won the inaugural event in a time of 3:53.1 minutes. The reigning course record was set in 1997 by Fritz Strobl, who crossed the finishing line in an impressive 1:51.58 minutes
Over 40 TV stations cover the race and it is a priceless event that captivates even those who do not usually follow ski racing. Only the best win on the hardest Downhill in the world. The names of past winners read like a who’s who of ski racing, from Killy, Sailer, Schranz, and Collombin, to Klammer, Read, Zurbriggen, Heinzer, Aamodt, Strobl, Maier, Eberharter, Walchhofer, Rahlves and Cuche.
From the breathtaking start at 1665 metres (5465 feet) above sea level, racers plunge down the slope’s vertical drop of 860 m (2822 ft) at speeds up to 150 km/h (93mph), covering the 3312 metres (10,866 feet) of the course in less than two minutes before dramatically crossing the finish line in the spectator-packed finish area. Yet the Hahnenkamm-Races are more than simple statistics, and behind these numbers lies the greatest ski spectacle in the world. The Downhill on Kitzbühel’s almost impossibly difficult slope, the Streif, leaves one continually searching for superlatives that could adequately portray it. The simplest way to describe this drop down the most fearsome slope on the World Cup tour is simply: "The Race". What Wimbledon is for Tennis and Monaco is for Formula 1, "Kitz" is for ski racing.

Start: 1665 m.
Finish: 805 m.
Vertical drop: 860 m.
Course length: 3.312 m.
Gradient in average: 27%
Maximum gradient: 85 %
Maximum speed: 120-140 km/h

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

2018 UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup in Saas Fee, Switzerland

Next weekend, 19-20 January 2018, Saas-Fee will once again play host to the Ice Climbing World Cup. This year the famous week-long ice climbing event will be even more spectacular thanks to new climbing features.
The car-free alpine village of Saas Fee with its unique competition wall inside a circular car park at the edge of town is set against the spectacular backdrop of the towering Swiss Alps. It is also one of the oldest and liveliest stops on the UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup.
From next Saturday, ice-climbing freaks from across the globe will once again flock to Saas-Fee. A programme of action-packed sporting events and legendary ice-climbing parties in the multi-storey car park.
The ice climbing competitions in the park of Saas-Fee are an excellent opportunity national and international athletes and the lively atmosphere of the ice climbing scene to witness first hand! The competitions will take place in a special, unique location, so surely there is no more second time. The 10-storey car park in Saas-Fee, where the competitions can take place regardless of weather, with its roundabout provides a great backdrop audience.

The disciplines: Lead and Speed

In Lead climbing, competitors have to master a long, difficult and unfamiliar route in a given amount of time. Routes can be anything up to 35 meters in height. Besides the ice wall itself, climbers must contend with obstacles such as overhangs, hanging ice blocks and tricky rock sections. Ice climbers consider this discipline the ultimate challenge. The winner is the competitor who covers the greatest distance in the allotted time. One way of measuring this is by counting the number of carabiners that the climbers manage to clip the rope through.
As its name suggests, the competition’s second discipline is all about speed. As soon as the starting barrier falls, the competitors leap onto the 15-meter vertical wall of ice and scramble to the top at a breath-taking pace – just like Spiderman! Top athletes can complete the course in an incredible 13 seconds. Since 2012 this discipline is run in parallel.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Marcel Hirscher Wins Wengen Slalom

On Sunday, the tech racers take over the hill in Wengen and race a slalom on the Jungfrau / Männlichen course. Despite a record holding biography, the Austrian star had never celebrated a win on this slalom hill in the past and was looking to get even.
With a +0.35 advantage over André Myhrer and +0.59 on slalom whiz Henrik Kristoffersen from the first run, Hirscher could charge the second run and ski to his 25th slalom win, claimed in 15 different resorts. This slalom win also makes it 5 in a row for Marcel Hirscher. Another record he hadn’t achieved before today. Marcel Hirscher is now one World Cup win shy of legend Hermann Maier in second place of all-time.
The Norwegian slalom globe winner of 2016 participated in his 100th World Cup race today, earning a total of 40 podiums, a pretty impressive quote that surpasses the number Marcel Hirscher had at that point in his career. However, Henrik Kristoffersen hopes for more wins, and not “only” podiums. Since the start of this season, he was on the podium at every race but wasn’t able to win yet. He becomes the first athlete to record more than five slalom podiums without a win.
In 3rd place, André Myhrer confirms his great shape and takes the fourth place of the discipline standings that he won in 2012. The Swede found his pace in the first run and was able to hold on to the podium also in the second run, to grab a 26th podium in career.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Sofia Goggia Leads Italian Podium Sweep in Bad Kleinkirchheim

Sofia Goggia returned to her winning ways before hitting PyeongChang with a downhill victory at Bad Kleinkichheim on Sunday. Skiing down a shortened course using the super-G start due to fog on the upper mountain, Goggia was characteristically aggressive and risky, and the style paid off massively. She bested her teammates Federica Brignone (whose previous best downhill result was the 12th place) by 1.10 seconds and Nadia Fanchini (who suffered a season-ending injury almost exactly one year earlier) by 1.45 seconds, but the Italian trio still swept the podium.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Beat Feuz Wins the ‪Lauberhorn‬ ‪Downhill‬ in Wengen

Taking the win in front of your home crowd, on a legendary track, on a beautiful sunny day, is pretty much as good as it gets. Beat Feuz had the honor today in Wengen as he won the legendary Lauberhorn downhill ahead of Aksel Lund Svindal and Matthias Mayer.
Beat Feuz came down with bib number one and his run held up through a competitive field. Feuz had to sweat it out in the leader's box as one-by-one his competitors came close but could not top the Swiss speed star. He withstood his first major test with Svindal came down two racers later, dangerously close to spoiling the Feuz fairy tale, but ultimately finishing 0.18 seconds behind.
German Thomas Dressen also challenged two races later, but ultimately had to settle for fifth place nearly a second behind Feuz, the next scare for the home crowd with their red and white flags came when Austrian Matthias Mayer was in the hunt. Wearing bib 11, he was close to Feuz, but finished 0.67 behind, good enough for the final podium place on the day.
After Wengen suffered the after effects of a major storm early in the week, the legendary race recovered amazing well as there was no sign of the major wind damage from earlier in the week. thousands of fans flocked to the Berner Oberland resort and enjoyed beautiful blue skies and as a bonus a Swiss victory.

Federica Brignone Bad Kleinkirchheim Super-G

Federica Brignone of Italy was the surprise winner of the super-G in  on Saturday. After the ladies were prevented from skiing the bottom portion of the race slope during the week, the hill set up overnight and was in race-worthy condition for Saturday morning.
Lara Gut of Switzerland skied with precision from bib 7 to take the early lead despite catching her arm on the fourth to final gate and finishing her run with only a single pole. Brignone followed one skier later with a hard-charging run to take a 0.18-second lead over Gut. Austrian Conny Huetter, with bib 13, squeezed out her first super-G podium finish of the season at the resort that's only 20 minutes from her boyfriend's home.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Victor Muffat-Jeandet Wins Alpine Combined in Wengen

The Alpine combined from Wengen 2018 delivered three maiden winners: Victor Muffat-Jeandet took his first World Cup win, Pavel Trikhichev claimed his first podium and Peter Fill earned his first alpine combined globe.
In 2015 Victor Muffat-Jeandet finished in second place in Wengen Combined and earned his first ever World Cup podium. The Frenchman was 27th in the downhill but clocked the fastest slalom run of the day for an impressive climb in the rankings.
The day started early morning with a downhill run on the legendary Lauberhorn track in Wengen, ending with Austrian Vincent Kriechmayr leading the pack, +0.59 ahead of his teammate Hannes Reichelt. However, in the second run on one of the most challenging slalom hills of the tour, the speed specialists had a hard time to keep up and lost a lot of time on the fastest time set by Victor Muffat-Jeandet.
The Frenchman boosted his confidence last weekend in Adelboden, where he laid down the fastest time of the second slalom run. Thanks to an acceptable downhill run (27th, +2.55), the snow conditions were perfect for his slalom run and he was able to clock a time that wouldn’t be beaten by anyone after him. After five World Cup podium in giant slalom (3) and alpine combined (2) so far, Victor Muffat-Jeandet now claimed his first World Cup win.
Pavel Trinkhichev is a name that probably didn’t ring a bell to most ski fans until today. The 25 years old Russian athlete won the Far East Cup Overall ranking last season and participated in 61 World Cup races so far. His best results came in the tech disciplines with a 16th place in the Adelboden giant slalom last week. Just within the Top 30 in the downhill run (29th, +2.59) he could also benefit from excellent conditions on the slalom run and ski onto the podium for the first time in his career.
Among the speed athletes, Peter Fill is the one that could handle the slalom the best. He was able to zig zag between the gates and hold on to his lead from the downhill run (4th) to clinch the third spot on the podium. The 60 points he scored today, added to the 80 he was able to earn with his second place in Bormio, offer a third globe to the South Tyrolean. After two consecutive downhill globes in the last two seasons, Peter Fill will be awarded the alpine combined globe 2018 at the World Cup Finals in Are.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The Lauberhorn Races (Wengen, Switzerland)

The 88th International Lauberhorn Races will take place next weekend in Wengen, Switzerland.
As part of the Men's Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup this is taking place from January 12th to 14th with three events, a Super Combination, a Downhill and a Slalom races. The International Lauberhorn races are part of the Club 5+ Alpine Classics, a union of the leading alpine ski race organizers from all over the world. It was founded 1988 upon an idea of world cup founder and sports journalist Serge Lang. Charter members had been the "Five" Downhill classic sites in the Alps: Gardena/Gröden (ITA), Garmisch (GER), Kitzbühel (AUT), Wengen (SUI), Val d’Isere (FRA). The 1st International Lauberhorn Race Wengen took place in 1930. On November 28, 1929, along with the co-founders of the Swiss Academic Ski Club (SAS) in Berne Ernst Gertsch signed the founding document of the Lauberhorn Race. After the pioneering years (from 1924), with this race, the wonderful story of Alpine ski racing really began to unfold. A story that is marked, to a large extent, by Arnold Lunn and Ernst Gertsch who guided it through many perils. It was a long, difficult and often bumpy road.
Wengen (1274 m) is a car-free resort located on a sheltered, sun-soaked terrace, 400 meters above the picturesque Lauterbrunnen Valley. The fantastic surrounding scenery is dominated by the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau massif. The holiday destination of Wengen is situated in the in the heart of the Bernese Oberland, 18 kilometers from Interlaken, the Lakes of Thun and Brienz, and close to the UNESCO World Heritage Jungfrau-Aletsch-Bietschhorn. The Jungfrau Region Ski Paradise offers 45 lifts and 213 kilometers of pistes in three different ski areas: Grindelwald-First, Wengen (Kleine Scheidegg-Männlichen) and Mürren-Schilthorn, with its revolving Piz Gloria Restaurant, made world-famous by the James Bond film On Her Majesty's Secret Service offers 45 lifts and 213 kilometers of pistes.

Updated program

Friday, January 12th, 2018 
10:30/14:00 CET Men's Alpine Combined (Downhill and Slalom)

Saturday, January 13th, 2018 

12:30 CET TBC Men's Downhill

Sunday, January 14th, 2018 

10:30/13:30 CET Men's Slalom

Mikaela Shiffrin Wins World Cup Slalom in Flachau

Mikaela Shiffrin won her 41st career World Cup title and her fifth victory in a row since the New Year under the lights in the Flachau slalom.
In front of a huge crowd with more than 10'000 cheering fans, 68 racers battled it out under the lights in difficult conditions for the sixth Slalom of the season. In the second position after the opening run, Mikaela Shiffrin didn't let anyone prevent her from earning her another Wolrd Cup victory. She finished in a combined time of 1:50.86 to edge out her nearest rivals Bernadette Schild and Frida Hansdotter both respectively +0.94 and 1.43 seconds off the pace.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Marcel Hirscher Takes 4th Slalom Victory in a Row

Simply incredible. It’s hard to describe how dominant Marcel Hirscher is in the tech disciplines at the moment. For the first time, the six-time winner of the Overall World Cup earned four slalom races in a row. Another record for the man who has now claimed 52 World Cup wins, 25 in giant slalom and 24 in slalom. This slalom win is added to the six he already had under his belt this season, and increases his lead in all the three disciplines that he is participating in (giant slalom, slalom, overall).
Behind him, Michael Matt proved that he’s in an excellent shape, with three-second places in three races this year. After some struggles in the early season, the Austrian started the year with a second place in the City Event in Oslo, in the slalom in Zagreb and in today in Adelboden. These solid results bring him back to the third place of the discipline ranking.
Henrik Kristoffersen is skiing very well at the moment and is very constant. However, it’s been 8 podium placements but not a single win yet this season. Focusing more on the giant slalom, where he was able to make an important step forward, the Norwegian slalom globe winner from 2016 struggles to reach the very top in his favourite discipline this season. But the results are there, and Kristoffersen is happy with the second places he is sitting in on the World Cup standings.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

40th World Cup Victory for Mikaela Shiffrin in Kranjska Gora

Mikaela Shiffrin claimed her 40th career World Cup victory in the Kranjska Gora slalom on Sunday after charging down an icy slope and taking a commanding lead over the rest of the field. Her back-to-back wins in Slovenia were also commemorated with the 54th Golden Fox Trophy, the third of her career and thus one with diamond honors. It was the first diamond Golden Fox Trophy to be awarded since Anja Paerson raced in Maribor.
Frida Hansdotter picked up her third straight slalom podium result with a solid second-place finish. She's excited to head next to Flachau, Austria, the site of her last victory one year ago. With another passionate performance, Wendy Holdener also skied to her third straight slalom podium finish in third. After finishing the GS in fourth, Holdener secured the second-place award in the Golden Fox Trophy.
Her second straight fourth-place finish in the slalom was bittersweet, but Petra Vhlova landed in the third podium position for the Golden Fox Trophy after finishing ninth in the GS. The Slovakian recently announced that she is sponsoring 12 of the best junior skiers in Slovakia and providing them with a variety of race-specific equipment including speed suits, protection, poles, gloves, and backpacks. She hopes to continue to give back and promote the sport in her home country by offering support that was not available when she was a junior competitor.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Mikaela Shiffrin Wins Giant Slalom in Kranjska Gora.

Mikaela Shiffrin claimed her third victory in a row since the new year with a win in the giant slalom of the 54th Golden Fox Trophy held at Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, due to a lack of snow in Maribor. Despite suffering from an illness early in the day, the American opened up a large gap over the field on the first run and ultimately bested France's Tessa Worley by 0.31 seconds at the end of the day. Rain in the second run challenged visibility for the athletes, but the strongest prevailed on the slope traditionally used on the men's tour.
Italy's Sofia Goggia sat eighth after the first run but attacked the lower pitch on the second run to catapult onto the podium in third. Switzerland's Wendy Holdener skied to a career-best GS finish in fourth, and Audi hot seat favorite Estelle Alphand of Sweden skied the fastest second run to finish 10th from bib 30.

Marcel Hirscher Wins World Cup GS in Adelboden

It was a fight at the highest level on the Chuenisbärgli in Adelboden today for the 5th giant slalom of the season. Not less than 31’000 thousand spectators cheered for the 70 athletes at the start. With Marcel Hirscher, Henrik Kristoffersen and Alexis Pinturault, the three biggest names among the tech athletes managed to earn a podium today.
Marcel Hirscher is in an impressive shape at the moment. He won not less than six races this season and claimed 8 podium placements. In giant slalom, the statistic is even more imposing, as he won 8 out of the 10 last races in that discipline including the World Championships. His run was not flawless, as it is often the case on the challenging Chuenisbärgli, but it was enough for the champion to grab a 51st World Cup victory.
In the second position, for the 6th time this season, Henrik Kristoffersen found his way to the podium, despite a big mistake in the final pitch. The Norwegian made a big step in this discipline, becoming constant at a very high level. Today, he was only +0.17 away from a second career win in giant slalom. Kristoffersen currently places 2nd in all three cup standings he is in the giant slalom, the slalom, and the Overall. Always behind Marcel Hirscher.
The giant slalom season started with a win in front of his home crowd for Alexis Pinturault in Val d’Isère. If last year he could win the Adelboden race +0.04 ahead of Marcel Hirscher, this time he ranked behind the Austrian and Kristoffersen, in third place. The Frenchman moved up to the podium from his 5th place in the first run as he was the fastest in all the splits of the second run, but not enough for the win today.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

4th Crown for Marcel Hirscher in Zagreb

In front of 14000 cheering fans, Marcel Hirscher dominated the first slalom of the year in Zagreb/Sljeme and took home his third Snow Queen Trophy crown. It was his 3rd slalom win in a row and his 4th win in Zagreb The Austrian also equals Alberto Tomba in third place of all time with 50 World Cup victories.
The figures speak for themselves. What Marcel Hirscher is achieving at the moment is outstanding and with his strength, his skills on the snow and his confidence, it will be hard to stop him. Last time he won three successive slaloms were back in 2012/13, he is the only man with more than one victory in Zagreb, and with 50 wins, he equaled Alberto Tomba in third place of all time.
Even though they couldn’t prevent him from winning in the slalom in Zagreb today, two athletes were pretty close. First of all, Austrian Michael Matt could claim a fifth podium in his career. In the lead after the first run, Mario Matt’s little brother was able to fly over the ruts to limit his time loss in the second run and make the podium. With his second place in Oslo on the 1st January, it makes two second places within three days, and the next chance is coming up with another slalom in Adelboden on Sunday.
In third place, Henrik Kristoffersen had mixed feelings after his run. Even though he is happy about a third place, he couldn’t hide his disappointment due to his mistake on the flat part in the second run. Nevertheless, it’s a 7th podium placement for the Norwegian, who is now trailing Marcel Hirscher in second place in the Overall and slalom standings.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Mikaela Shiffrin Dominates Zagreb Slalom

Mikaela Shiffrin was in a league of her own today as she clocked the fastest time in Zagreb and won the race by an astonishing 1.59 seconds ahead of Wendy Holdener. In third place today came Frida Hansdotter by finishing 2.11 seconds behind the winner Shiffrin.
Mikaela Shiffrin has been almost unbeatable, winning the two last races and finishing second in Levi. Zagreb was no different; even though Shiffrin had a “heard breaking experience” on this slope last season (she did not finish the first run). Her confidence is so big at the moment, which allows her to ski very aggressive and faster than everyone else. She just recorded a 28th slalom win, continuing a winning strike of 23 podiums in 24 participations in that discipline.Switzerland's slalom whiz Wendy Holdener finished the slalom in Zagreb on the second place, +1.59 behind Shiffrin. The alpine combined World Champion is in a great shape and skis at a very high level, earning her fourth podium this season. Her best result in Zagreb so far was the 15th position in back in 2013.
Frida Hansdotter rounded out the podium, +2.11 off the pace of the Snow Queen. She has been pretty constant in slalom this season, her worst result being a 5th place in Levi, claiming the 4th spot of the discipline standings. The Swede had claimed a podium in Zagreb before (2nd in 2013) but wasn’t able to wear the crown yet.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Mikaela Shiffrin and Andre Myhrer Wins Oslo City Event

The first ever City Event in Oslo took place today on the legendary Holmenkollen ski jumping hill.
Mikaela Shiffrin wins first Alpine Ski World Cup competition of 2018 in Oslo City Event and confirms on top of Overall Leaderboard. Wendy Holdener surrends in Big Final, while her Swiss compatriot Melanie Meillard rounds out the podium in third place.
On the Men's side, Andre Myhrer conquers maiden victory of the season in Oslo City Event. Swedish skier outduels Michael Matt (Austria) in Big Final to top podium. Third place for Linus Strasser from Germany.