Val Gardena/Gröden delivers a skiing spectacle in XXL format.
On the occasion of the 56th edition of the speed classics on the venerable Saslong, the crème de la crème of the Alpine Ski World Cup were once again guests in Val Gardena/Gröden shortly before Christmas. As a downhill race that had been canceled in Zermatt-Cervinia was made up for on the Saslong, ski fans could look forward to one more race than usual.
Vitalini Speed Contest, dreaming of Svindal and others
Following in the footsteps of Svindal & Co., the "Vitalini Speed Contest" was held immediately after the super-G, a speed competition dedicated to the very young talents of skiing.
VIDEO: a special thank you by Sarah Lewis
A special thank you by FIS Secretary General Sarah Lewis to the organizers of the Audi FIS Ski World Cup in Val Gardena/Gröden for both hosting the men’s Super-G and classic Downhill but, furthermore, for stepping in and hosting two additional ladies’ events making this an extra special World Cup week in the valley.
Theaux also kicking off downhill with start number 1
The award ceremony of the super-G on Friday evening on the Antonius Square in Ortisei/St. Ulrich was immediately followed by the the bib draw for Saturday’s downhill.
"It couldn't be better."
At the team captains’ meeting on Friday in Selva/Wolkenstein, the super-G was reviewed and the latest information announced for the downhill on Saturday.
The super-G in Val Gardena/Gröden as seen by the international media
The events on the Saslong on Friday found their coverage in numerous online media from all over the world. Here is a small excerpt...
"A role model for all"
After his victory in the super-G on Friday, "Saslong King" Aksel Lund Svindal outshines everything in Val Gardena/Gröden. Here is what the racers had to say about today's super-G.
Record holder Aksel Lund Svindal wins the super-G ahead of a super Christof Innerhofer
He is still the king, Aksel Lund Svindal. The Norwegian wins once again on the Saslong amassing seven victories on the Val Gardena/Gröden track. Svindal wins today's super-G ahead of Christof Innerhofer. The Italian sees the first place fade away by only 5/100 of a second. Another Norwegian completes the podium, Kjetil Jansrud. Wonderful day and wonderful audience in the first race of the World Cup weekend in Val Gardena/Gröden.
VIDEO: Alexander Rabanser on the job of course slider
Alexander Rabanser is responsible for the "slippers" on the Saslong. In the video, he explains what work awaits him and his 35-people-strong team during the World Cup week in Val Gardena/Gröden.
The FISI invites the schoolchildren of Val Gardena/Gröden to the ladies’ competitions
The Organizing Committee and the Italian winter sports federation FISI invite all schoolchildren of Val Gardena/Gröden to attend the downhill and super-G races for free.
Adrien Theaux opens the super-G on Friday
The start numbers for the super-G on the Saslong were decided during a lovely celebration at the "Puent da Mulin" in Selva/Wolkenstein.
“Everything is ready and we are looking forward to great races"
The mood of the organizers and the FIS was very good also at the third team captains' meeting in Selva/Wolkenstein. Both training runs went without any major incidents, thus, nothing stands in the way of the upcoming two races on the weekend.
The second training as seen by the international media
The training victory of the Austrian Max Franz was reported in numerous online media around the globe. Here is a small excerpt...
"Max is the man to beat"
With his clear victory in the second training session, the Austrian Max Franz definitely established himself as the favorite to win the downhill on Saturday. Here are what the racers had to say about the 2nd day of training.
A "Christmas Party" on Friday - without Lukas Lobis
The men's super-G is not the only highlight on the docket for Friday in Val Gardena/Gröden. In the evening, there will be a rich entertainment program for all ski fans and media representatives.
Max Franz leaves everyone behind in the second training run
Max Franz's was the best time in the second and last downhill training in view of the classic race scheduled for Saturday. This training on the Saslong also took place in good conditions.
VIDEO: “Course will continue to develop very well"
FIS race director Markus Waldner was very satisfied with the first downhill training. The resident from nearby Brixen/Bressanone also has no doubts for the upcoming race weekend and expects exciting competitions on a fast track.
"I know I can do more"
Christof Innerhofer gave an impressive performance proving that he is also good for a top ranking this year on the Saslong after a fourth place in the first training. In an interview, the South Tyrolean talks about his great start of the season and further goals this World Cup winter.
VIDEO: Peter Runggaldier talks about the secrets of the Saslong
Hardly anyone else knows the Saslong as well as the former ski racer Peter Runggaldier. The 49-year-old from Selva/Wolkenstein, who climbed a World Cup podium twelve times in the 1990s, took a close look at the race week for us.
From Val Gardena/Gröden to the whole wide world
The first downhill training was not only front and center in the Saslong editorial office but also covered by numerous online media. Here is a small excerpt...
The first training makes you want for more
During the second team captains’ meeting in Selva/Wolkenstein, FIS and the Organizing Committee reviewed the first downhill training and took a look at the rest of the race week ahead. The team is pleased with today and ready for the second training day.
The voices of the first training in Val Gardena/Gröden
At the first training run for the downhill classic on the Saslong, the American Travis Ganong was the fastest of all. After the training, racers gave their first assessments for the record.
Travis Ganong ahead in first practice run
On Wednesday, the first of two downhill training runs took place in Val Gardena/Gröden under wonderful sunny conditions. The American Travis Ganong clocked the fastest time.
Online media reports on first day in Val Gardena / Gröden
Not only the Saslong editorial team reported on first day in Val Gardena / Gröden but also numerous online media worldwide. Here is a selection...
"Ideal race course, good weather forecasts"
On Tuesday evening, the first team captains’ meeting took place in Selva/Wolkenstein, which traditionally opens the World Cup week in Val Gardena/Gröden. The discussion was about the race week in general as well as the condition of the race course - but there was more: as leaked during the meeting, the beleaguered Peter Fill will not participate in the downhill.
New ideas for more safety in skiing
As part of the Ski World Cup, a glimpse into the future of skiing will be takin in the NOI Techpark in Bolzano/Bozen and on the Saslong in Val Gardena/Grödenwill. At the "Safety Innovation Summit", suppliers, research institutes and athletes will discuss new ideas, concepts and projects for race and course safety. All aspects of safety will be explored - from course conditions, equipment and race organization to safety fences and barriers.
The Saslong editorial team is ready!
Everything is ready for the speed classics on the legendary Saslong in Val Gardena/Gröden. The race track is in an ideal condition, the weather forecasts are promising and the Saslong editors are ready to get to work as well.
Aleksander Aamodt Kilde: "I want to win the super-G"
Battle announcement by Aleksander Aamodt Kilde, winner of the 2017 Südtirol Ski Trophy; he is 26 and is no longer hiding behind his successful compatriots: Aleksander Aamodt Kilde was on the podium in Val Gardena/Gröden for the first time in 2015 and won the super-G World Cup in the same year - but he still sees himself in a learning stage. His long-term objective is to compete for the overall World Cup.
Program of the women's race in Val Gardena
Three practice runs and two races.
Here is the official program for the women's race at the Saslong:
Val Gardena/Gröden is looking forward to a big TV presence
The whole world is waiting for the ski races in Val Gardena/Gröden. As sports marketing company Infront announced, the races on the Saslong will be seen all across the European, Asian and North American continents.
Val Gardena/Gröden takes over Val d'Isère ladies‘ race
For the first time, Val Gardena/Gröden will host ladies‘ World Cup races. There will be a downhill and a super-G on the Saslong on 18 and 19 December. These two races and a combination had to be cancelled in Val d'Isère in France due to lack of snow.