FEB 10, 2020
At Berchtesgaden, the third stop of this season’s World Cup, the Atomic Backland Athletes scored on all the three race days. Davide Magnini (ITA) takes home a 3rd place in the vertical and a victory in the individual race, Iwan Arnold (SUI) wins the sprint race, and the brand-new team member Rémi Bonnet (SUI) scored second in the vertical. The junior athlete Paul Verbnjak (AUT) even stands on the podium in all three competitions.
It was a long race weekend at the ISMF World Cup in Berchtesgaden/GER. After the cancellation of the World Cup in China, the organizers of the traditional “Jennerstier” race hosted a vertical race on Friday in addition to the individual race on Saturday and the sprint race on Sunday. For the athletes, that meant they had to do a super-World Cup with three disciplines on three consecutive days. The individual on Saturday had a classy, highly technical, and demanding track of 1600 meters of cumulative elevation gain with almost 8 kilometers ready for the competitors. The conditions in the sprint race were difficult as well, especially the carrying passage with its deep snow conditions was a key section. In the Vertical, the last demanding uphill at the end of the course was extremely steep, once again almost making the athletes’ lungs burst. The Atomic athletes ran to the podium in all disciplines and were scoring at full.
Davide Magnini, who has been improving his performance since the beginning of the season, had the best world cup-weekend of his career at Berchtesgaden. In the individual race, he took the „Jennerstier-bull“ by the horns and celebrated his first world cup victory in the senior category. That makes Magnini only the third athlete to stand on the top of the senior-podium as an U23-competitor – a milestone in his career which had followed a third seniors‘-place and at the same time an espoir-victory in his actual major discipline vertical. His comment after the individual race: „I felt very good in the first two uphills, and in the middle of the third uphill, I put all my eggs into one basket. I also knew that my colleagues, who had not competed in the vertical, had examined every detail of the downhill section, so I had to start attacking pretty early. I could push the attack through until I reached the finish and was able to gain more and more ground. Also, the downhills worked perfectly. The atmosphere on the last meters with many spectators was simply wonderful.”
The Swiss Iwan Arnold once more achieved the victory in his major discipline sprint. With controlled and tactically clever heats, Arnold increased his lead in the sprint World Cup. Especially the final run was a masterstroke. He stayed cool until the half way of the race, ignited the turbo only in the carrying passage, and stormed to the top. The transitions, super-fast as usual, did the rest. Concerning his victory, he says: „I slept very badly and thought that today this is not going to work. But I was able to focus well and to improve from heat to heat, I was never at the limit. I played my tactic, less strong at the start and unpacking in the end, that worked out fully.”
For the Swiss athlete Rémi Bonnet, new to the Atomic family, the vertical race on Friday was the highlight of the weekend. He delivered a strong performance and ranked second in front of Backland-team colleague Magnini. “Over the past weeks, I have tested the Backland 65UL extensively and in all condiDations, I got along with it amazingly well. Also, the skins worked convincingly. I am super happy with the package and I have a lot of plans for the rest of this season in all disciplines, long distance and World Cup.”
After his previous accomplishments at the World Cups in France and Andorra, the Austrian Junior Paul Verbnjak belonged to the fastest athletes of his class also at the Jenner mountain. He is the only junior athlete who has been able to reach the podium in all competitions of this season’s World Cup. At the Jennerstier vertical on Friday he was second, at the individual and at the sprint, he ranked third.
After the successful weekend in Germany, the World Cup will be continued after a longer break with an event of superlatives: from the 2nd to the 5th of April 2020, the ISMF World Cup circuit will be guest at Madonna di Campiglio/ITA, where the last World Cup of the season and at the same time the European Championships are held. But before, the athletes will be reeling off vert meters at race speed at the Grande Course events and other alpine classics.