Ligety wakes up as GS World Cup Champion.
Ted Ligety started the season in awesome form with three wins in the first three races (Soelden was cancelled due to the fog). From then on the rest were playing catch up and this is hard when you are chasing the defending World Cup Champion and also the current World Champion. With the race cancelled very early in the morning, Ligety was woken up with a text message from the American Head Coach Sasha Rearick, he tried to go back to sleep but when you are the newly crowned World Cup Champion, there is only one thing to do: Have a celebratory toast – for breakfast!
So when Ligety looks back at the World Cup how does he evaluate his season? “All three of those wins were special in their unique way,” he said. “I think Alta Badia was maybe the coolest because that is a GS hill I have always wanted to win on. It is one of the classics.”
Yet all three wins have a special meaning to him: Winning in front of friends and family in Beaver Creak was great for him and then to win by over a second in Val d’Isere was a great confidence boost he admitted.
Having won in 2008 and then recaptured the Globe last season, this year has been special and something that he is extremely proud of: “This year I did it in the fashion that I am definitely more proud of and this season having won the World Championships was huge,” he continued. “It was a good feeling being able to win under that kind of pressure.”
While the men’s Giant Slalom was cancelled, conditions allowed the Women’s slalom to go ahead. The race for the women’s Overall has been one of the most enthralling in years and with her fourth place, Maria Riesch is now back in the driving seat, just three points ahead of Lindsey Vonn, who placed 13th. Having lost the lead of the Overall World Cup after the downhill, Riesch could not explain why she was back to looking like her best again: “I don’t have an explanation,” Riesch said of her regained confidence. “I just now know again that there’s no reason to go down to the valley just because you have two or three bad races. This is important to see. Today I got my confidence back and it’s important to see from one day to the other that it can work again.”
With the weather showing little sign of changing, the chances are that the Giant Slalom will be cancelled are great. How do the two racers feel about this? For Riesch, being in the driving seat, this would be great news, “I think if you can choose to win it or maybe win or lose, you would choose win, of course,” she said. “But you can’t influence that anyway, you have to take it like it is. If there’s a race tomorrow, I will do my best and hopefully still win it.”
For Vonn “I would be devastated if they cancelled the race and I wouldn’t have a chance to defend my title. I hope my GS is good enough that I can beat Maria.” said Vonn. Time will tell.
Women’s World Cup Finals Slalom
1. Tina Maze
2. Marlies Schild
3. Veronika Zuzulova
4. Maria Riesch (GER) HEAD
10 Susanne Riesch (GER) HEAD
13 Lindsey Vonn (USA) HEAD
16 Denise Feierabend (SUI) HEAD
17 Sarka Zahrobska (CZE) HEAD
19 Anna Fenninger (AUT) HEAD
28 Anja Paerson (SWE) HEAD