Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy – Ramona Siebenhofer of Austria had skied the fastest downhill training runs on numerous occasions and had two podium finishes to her name, but she had yet to win a World Cup race until Friday in Cortina d’Ampezzo (ITA) where she bested Ilka Stuhec of Slovenia by a decisive 0.40 seconds in the opening downhill at the resort. The race replaced the cancelled downhill from St. Anton (AUT).
Organisers were forced to lower the start to the top of Tofana in the morning due to overnight snowfall. But the incredible scenery and athletic performances proved noteworthy for spectators both on site and those viewing on TV.
Siebenhofer’s teammate Stephanie Venier skied to her first podium of the season in third place, just 0.06 seconds from Stuhec. But Stuhec’s solid performance in second helped the Slovenian skier on the return from last season’s injury to make a push for the season standings lead. She now sits only 10 points behind downhill standings leader Nicole Schmidhofer (AUT) who won both races at the speed opener in Lake Louise. Siebenhofer, meanwhile, is third in the standings at 28 points behind her teammate.
The ladies will contest another downhill at Cortina d’Ampezzo on Saturday, and organisers plan to use the top start for a full-length run.
First AC win for Marco Schwarz
The first Audi FIS Ski World Cup alpine combined of the 2019 season took place today in Wengen. Due to the weather forecast, the jury had decided to switch the daily program and to start with the slalom run, followed by the downhill starting shortly above the Hundschopf.
Today’s race went to Austria’s Marco Schwarz. The slalom whiz laid down an impressive downhill run and was able to defend his lead from the slalom, skiing to his first alpine combined victory in career. This comes only 18 days after he claimed his first World Cup in the City Event in Oslo, and shortly after the skied out in Zagreb and Adelboden, giving up on the first run lead. The super-g junior World Champion of 2014 is having an incredible momentum and can be proud to stand in the 6th position of the Overall standings.
Victor Muffat-Jeandet likes Wengen a lot. It’s the place where he earned his first World cup podium and his first win last year. In the meantime, the Frenchman was able to claim an Olympic medal in that discipline and turned into a favorite in this discipline. Especially with his strong slalom results and the 10th place he took in the second training run. But he was able to hold on to the pressure and earn another World Cup podium, the 8th of his career.
In third position, multiple alpine combined globe winner Alexis Pinturault grabbed his 50th podium in career. Thanks to a solid slalom run, he as able to hold on to the podium in the downhill part and claimed the 3rd position of today’s alpine combined.
Tomorrow, the traditional Lauberhorn downhill will be held in Wengen, before the slalom skiers take over on Sunday.