A series of world champions and current World Cup leaders will line up for the Para alpine skiing World Cup in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, from 18-20 January, which will be shown live at www.worldparaalpineskiing.org.
The slalom and giant slalom will be the last races ahead of the 2017 World Para Alpine Skiing Championships, which get underway in Tarvisio, Italy, on Sunday (22 January).
All of the leaders in the men’s sitting, standing and visually impaired rankings will compete.
Slovakia’s Miroslav Haraus tops the men’s visually impaired slalom with guide Maros Hudik having won races at two World Cups already this season. Italy’s Giacomo Bertagnolli is hot on his heels in second place with guide Fabrizio Casal.
In the giant slalom Haraus’ teammate Jakub Krako, guided by Branislav Brozman, leads the field with multiple podium finishes. Spain’s Jon Santacana Maiztegui and guide Miguel Galindo, as well as Haraus, are tied at just 15 points behind.
Another Slovakian skier, Paralympic champion and World Cup leader Henrieta Farkasova, headlines the women’s visually impaired field in the giant slalom.
With two World Cup wins Austria’s Thomas Grochar is the man to beat in the men’s slalom standing.
The USA’s Thomas Walsh has continued his success from his debut in 2015-16 into the new season. It was in Kranjska Gora one year ago where he reached his first World Cup podium, and he now leads the men’s giant slalom standing.
Australia’s Mitchell Gourley is currently second and continues his tour of Europe ahead of the World Championships.
In the absence of Germany’s World Cup leader Andrea Rothfuss, the Netherlands’ Anna Jochemsen has the chance to claim the lead at the top of the women’s slalom standing.
Jochemsen is just 50 points behind Rothfuss. However Canada’s Alana Ramsay will not go quietly and trails Jochemsen by just 10 points in third place.
In the giant slalom Ramsay’s teammate Erin Latimer sits second behind Rothfuss.
Austria’s Roman Rabl has stormed ahead in the men’s giant slalom sitting. However Germany’s Georg Kreiter is gearing up to defend his world title in Tarvisio, and could prove a difficult opponent. Switzerland’s Paralympic champion Christoph Kunz has also returned to some of his best form at recent World Cups.
The USA’s Tyler Walker enjoys a slender one-point lead in the slalom, in front of the Netherlands’ Jeroen Kampschreur. Japan’s world and Paralympic champion Takeshi Suzuki will also line up.
The top three from both the women’s slalom and giant slalom sitting will go for victory.
In the giant slalom just 80 points separate Austria’s Claudia Loesch, Germany’s Anna-Lena Forster and her world and Paralympic champion teammate Anna Schaffelhuber.
In the slalom Paralympic gold medallist Schaffelhuber is the leader ahead of Forster and Japan’s Momoka Muraoka.
Racing gets underway in Kranjska Gora at 9:30am (CET) on Wednesday (18 January) with the giant slalom. Two separate slalom races will then take place on Thursday and Friday (19-20 January).
In addition to live coverage at www.worldparaalpineskiing.org, live results will also be available alongside pictures and updates at Facebook.com/paraalpine and Twitter and Instagram @ParaAlpine.
The 2017 World Para Alpine Skiing Championships get underway in Tarvisio, Italy, on 22 January, featuring 140 skiers from 30 countries in the last major competition ahead of the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games.
A livestream and live results will be available.