A number of giant slalom world and Paralympic champions were beaten at the IPC Alpine Skiing World Cup Finals in St. Moritz, Switzerland, on Monday (2 February), as skiers perfect their skills for the World Championships in just under four weeks’ time.
Germany’s Andrea Rothfuss (1:53.37) beat France’s world and Paralympic champion Marie Bochet (1:54.13) in the women’s standing with the two fastest runs, making her intentions clear for the Worlds in Panorama, Canada, from 28 February - 10 March.
Russia’s Mariia Papulova (2:02.82), a serial podium finisher in technical and speed events at Europa Cups in 2014-15, achieved her first World Cup podium of the season in third.
Austria’s Matthias Lanzinger (1:44.53) took victory in the men’s equivalent, taking the win over Russia’s Sochi 2014 silver medallist Alexey Bugaev (1:44.62). Thomas Pfyl (1:46.50) gave the hosts a podium with third.
Lanzinger’s teammate Claudia Loesch (1:57.00), the reigning world champion in women’s giant slalom sitting, hooked up two perfect runs to edge Paralympic champion Anna Schaffelhuber (1:57.85) into second.
The USA’s Laurie Stephens (2:04.77) rounded off the podium to collect her latest World Cup top three finish.
Japanese world champion Taiki Morii failed to make an impact in the men’s sitting, leaving the way clear for German Georg Kreiter (1:52.06) to take the win with two fastest runs.
New Zealand’s Corey Peters (1:52.64) was in third position after the first run, but was quicker on his second to finish ahead of Switzerland’s Christoph Kunz (1:52.71).
The men’s visually impaired was taken by Russia’s Valerii Redkozubov (1:50.67) and guide Evgenii Geroev, bronze medallists from Sochi 2014.
Compatriot Ivan Frantcev (1:54.79), guided by German Agranovskii was second. Italy’s Giacomo Bertagnolli (1:56.56) and guide Achille Crispino finished on the podium on their World Cup debut.
Great Britain’s Millie Knight (2:09.20), guided by Jen Kehoe, took victory at her first World Cup against the US husband and wife team of Danelle Umstead (2:15.12) and guide Rob.
Full results are available at http://www.paralympic.org/alpine-skiing/calendar-and-results.
Races continue in St. Moritz on Tuesday (3 February) with another edition of giant slalom, before continuing on Wednesday (4 February) and Thursday (5 February) with slalom races.
The 2015 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in Panorama, Canada, will feature around 130 of the world’s best skiers from 30 countries.
Media accreditation for Panorama 2015 is available at the event website.