DEC 12, 2016
The stars of the Atomic team continued their success in Val d'Isère and Sestriere.
There was a Redster racer on the podium this winter in every race except one. This time around? Marcel Hirscher with two second places. The 11th Slalom victory in series for Mikaela Shiffrin, 22nd of her career. Atomic whizzkid Sofia Goggia achieved a top 3 position in Sestriere for the fourth time already. The entire team remains on course for the Redster best case scenario.
It’s true class when performance is at the world’s peak even on mediocre days. According to Marcel Hirscher’s and Mikaela Shiffrin’s statements, it wasn’t very easy for either to leave their mark in Val d'Isère and Sestriere. And yet, Marcel has continued his enormous pace with 160 points from two races and further expanded his lead in the overall World Cup. "For the very top," he says, "there is a lack of lightness at the moment." That’s in part due to Marcel experimenting with the next evolutionary stage of his Redster racing boot; In the tests there was a promising performance boost in the training. "Perhaps the conditions didn’t fit the new boot perfectly. My existing setup is very reliable and I can fall back to it any time in Val d'Isère. But it’s also important to try new materials in the race - the new boot is almost there. "
CLOSE TO THE BEST-CASE SCENARIO: "ATOMIC ON THE PODIUM IN EVERY RACE"
Christian Höflehner, Atomic's Global Race Manager, reveals his best-case scenario for the World Cup winter: "That on average one of our athletes is on the podium in every race! We’re close to the golden third so far with only one podium missing. "The athletes from the Atomic Slalom team are the most likely to pick up the additional podium. This time, Marc Digruber with the best result in his career was the fourth best and thus very close. Marco Schwarz, Mattias Hargin, Manuel Feller absolutely have a top 3 potential, and it’s more of a question of time until they go to the podium. Marcel is a top performer in his current strength anyway. "
FATIGUE IS RELATIVE: MIKAELA CONTINUES TO BE IN HER OWN UNIVERSE
After slipping to the 6th position of the Giant Slalom after her half-time lead, her first Slalom race in Sestriere was not quite as playful as usual. She spoke of a certain fatigue. Short free-laps between the runs, self-motivation, a power nap: Mikaela was back in her own universe again and won her 22nd World Cup Slalom, one third of it in series.
She wants to leave the combo competition in Val d'Isère to prepare for the final GS before Christmas in Courchevel - her first GS victory seems to be due. According to Atomic Race Manager Höflehner, however, this also applies to Italy's Atomic star Sofia Goggia, who entered the seventh race in Sestriere with podium No. 4. In the Sestriere Slalom the Redster Youngsters Katharina Gallhuber and Katharina Huber showed a strong upward trend.
How will it continue? Speed block in Val Gardena for men with GS classics in Alta Badia, Monday as a parallel event. The ladies race the Alpine Combination, Downhill, Super-G in Val d'Isère.