Rasmus Windingstad decided it was the right time to give himself a Christmas present at the Parallel Giant Slalom in Alta Badia! The young Norwegian talent scored the 16th fastes time in the qualification rounds and then eliminated one by one his opponents to take his first World Cup victory in the final against Stefan Luitz (GER).
Roland Leitinger (AUT) coul celebrate his first World Cup podium, closing in third position and eliminating the Giant Slalom winner Henrik Kristoffersen (NOR) on his path to the small final.
Aleksander Aamodt Kilde (NOR) was the fastes on the qualification rounds, but was then eliminated in the 1/8 by his teammate and final winner Windingstas. Luitz was the second fastest in the qualifcation and proved to be at ease on the parallel course throughout the whole evening.
Taking a look at the overall ranking, Henrik Kristoffersen further consolidated his lead with his 7th place today (36 pts) and now heads the ranking 65 points ahead of Vincent Kriechmayr (AUT).
Now it’s time for a short Christmas break before heading to Bormio for two Downhill races (one being the rescheduling from Val Gardena) and one Alpine Combined from 27th to 29th December.
The only negative note of the “weekend” was Marco Odermatt’s injury. The Swiss young ace suffered from a meniscus tear in Sunday’s Giant Slalom race on the Gran Risa. Odermatt already underwent surgery and is working on his comeback. We wish him a speedy recovering and hope to see him racing again soon!
Kristoffersen conquers Gran Risa
After six years of Marcel Hirscher’s supremacy, it was time for Henrik Kristoffersen (NOR) to step up and win an amazing giant slalom race in Alta Badia. Thanks to a sensational second run on rough terrain, the Norwegian climbed up from fifth position to secure his 20th World Cup victory, 0.31s ahead of Cyprien Sarazzin (FRA) and further 0.08s faster than Zan Kranjec (SLO). He’s the first Norwegian ever to win on the Gran Risa.
It’s the second podium in Alta Badia for Sarazzin, who had already won a Parallel Event in 2016 on the final section of the Gran Risa. The French man had finished the first run in 22nd position and scored the fastest time in the second run, advancing 20 positions.
Kranjec proved again his magical moment and incredible consistency (always top 4 in GS this season) with a third place on one of the most iconic slopes of the World Cup Tour. The Slovenian is now sitting in second position in the Giant Slalom ranking, 23 points behind Henrik Kristoffersen.
Norwegian Nestvolf-Haugen was leading the race after run 1, but was not able to stay with the bests in the second run, finishing only 11th overall.
Kriechmayr claims third Super G victory in Val Gardena
After a complicated afternoon characterised by a dense fog and many long interruptions, Vincent Kriechmayr (AUT) was finally able to celebrate. The Austrian skier impressed everyone with a solid run, finishing just 0.05s ahead of Norwegian Kjetil Jansrud and 0.22 of Thomas Dressen (GER).
Kjetil Jansrud, who has won the Val Gardena Super G already twice in 2014 and 2016, just missed his 13th Super G victory, but was still happy to achieve his first podium of the season.
Thomas Dressen confirmed once again he is definitely back to fight with the top guys and claimed his second podium of the season after his terrific first place in the opening Downhill in Lake Louise (CAN).
Thanks to the 100 points earned today, Vincent Kriechmayr makes a clear step forward and now leads both the Super G and the Overall standings.