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With two cancellations due to wind, a season which is going to be difficult for the Redster Alpine
Department to beat came to an end: five Olympic Gold medals (out of a possible ten), seven
Crystal Globes (out of twelve), both Overall World Cup wins for the 2nd time in a row. And with
28 individual wins, thanks to three first places at the finals in Are (Sofia Goggia, Mikaela Shiffrin,
Marcel Hirscher) they also managed to jump to 1st place in the classification for the ski brand
with the most wins this winter.
At the start of the final racing week nothing was left to be desired. Olympic downhill winner Sofia Goggia defended her 23 point lead in the downhill leader’s board by coming in 2nd place and brought the downhill crystal globe back to Italy for the first time in 16 years. And with it the: absolute crystal global majority for the Redster unit. “I have never suffered as much, never longed for the race to end as much as this time”, admitted the 25 year old, who contributed to three of the ladies 15 Atomic wins in total this winter. The third win on the day after the downhill crystal globe in super G. “This makes us pretty confident for 2019. Sofia has already shown us in Korea how she can draw the right conclusions from successful final rehearsals”, Atomic Global Race Manager Christian Höflehner is confidently looking forward to the World Championships in Are.
The other twelve wins this season (only Vreni Schneider had more up until now) went to Mikaela Shiffrin, who delivered an impressive World Championship final rehearsal: 1.58 second lead in the slalom. The tiredness of the last few weeks was blown away. “I raced here like I do in my best dreams” the successful defending 23 year old champion was delighted as she carved her way to the second biggest lead in World Cup history (with 605 points!) with 18 places on the podium. Christian Höflehner: “The competition sniffed a chance, but in her 2nd run especially Mikaela put a dampener on their hopes. She proved that she can’t be beaten when she skis as she can do.”
MARCEL HIRSCHER: EACH STATISTIC IS A STATUE TO HIS UNIQUENESS
Despite three crystal globes for definite Marcel Hirscher also proved impressively why without him there would have been no real Olympic winter: in Are he managed his 58th World Cup win, his 5th giant slalom win in succession, although he only managed to miss his first sortie in 25 months or 55 races with some excellent acrobatics in the first run. The only longer series of success was granted to Ingemar Stenmark in 1979. For the seventh time now Overall World Cup winner every other statistic is just a monument to his uniqueness: from the last 15 technical races (excluding city events) he only missed winning in two coming in second and third place). From all the 44 giant slaloms in the last five years Marcel managed to get on the podium 39 times, won 21 times and never came in slower than 6th place. Marcel also beat Stenmark’s and Hermann Maier’s records of 13 season wins. And the additional two Gold medals just go to prove: he’s been skiing in his own league for a long time now.
Whilst Mikaela Shiffrin will be perfecting her technique and material for another whole month on snow in her home territory, Sofia Goggia wants to gain additional insights in Val di Fassa, Marcel will be putting his skis away until August. The high-flyer of the season (Mikaela Shiffrin: “He’s a great inspiration for me!”) is heading off on Wednesday to North America for some heli-skiing.