"The race track is already in very good condition".
In the first downhill training on the Saslong, which was started from the super-G start due to fog banks in the uppermost sections of the course, Jared Goldberg from the USA was unbeatable. Here are the voices of the racers.
Jared Goldberg, USA
I had a ton of fun and it was great. I can always ski better but I think i did mostly pretty well. So i’m pretty happy with how it went. I felt I carried the skies pretty well in the flat sections. I don’t have any expectations for the weekend. Just tying to get back, get my confidence back. The snow in first few races in Val d’Isère felt pretty weird for me and not the normal snow that we’re used to. Taking one day at a time. Today I felt a thousand times better than i did last weekend so I’m getting everything feeling good again and trying to push hard. The only difference here is trying to get from the lodge to the gondola and going by people thinking ok, this is race day. Every race has a mental side to it with race days being different from training days. It just feels like its a training week and race day won’t be much different. Hopefully it’s going to make it a little more relaxed. It’s going to be tough for me to be away from home for so long and not be able to jump back over the pond when I need to. It’s just a bad situation for everyone and that almost makes it easier to deal with it as I’m not the only one. That part is more of a first world problem, so that’s ok!
Bryce Bennett, USA
I’ve been nervous all week for this race. It’s been a long drive from Val d’Isère and there was a lot of time to think about for this weekend and I’m pretty fired up to ski this downhill. We started lower today due to fog. It was fine but I want to do the training from the top. The weather is going to be on the warmer side all week and the fog should clear up soon. There is definitely more snow than usual here this year, the track is in good shape and the jumps are a little smaller than I’d like, but that’s ok. It’s classic Val Gardena/Gröden. Not having fans is going to be quite a bummer because it’s always a very cool environment to come down here when the crowed is fired up and screaming once you’ve got a good run. We’ll see how it is. It’s a weird year for everyone and we’ll just try our best and i’m super excited to be racing.
Kjetil Jansrud, Norway
We had a very nice day but were unlucky with the fog and couldn't do a full-length training. Hopefully tomorrow we will go all the way. The terrain is fantastic this year, there is a little more snow - it will look great on the TV - and course conditions are good. For tomorrow, it will get a little colder and thus faster and more action-packed on the course - so far so good! The races in Val Gardena/Gröden always have the most cheering crowds from all the nations so it will be different this year without them here. But it’s a situation we just have to live with this year. At least we have the wooden crowd here which is nice. Val Gardena/Gröden is still going to be a classic with or without fans and hopefully we can put up a show again next year.