After four exciting competitions, the 2008/2009 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Alpine Skiing World Cup season ended Saturday with a Slalom race. A total of 130 athletes from 19 countries came to Whistler Creekside, Canada, for the final races in Downhill, Super-G, Super Combined, Giant Slalom and Slalom.
With her wins in the Giant Slalom and Slalom, Lauren Woolstencroft (CAN) became the dominating athlete in Whistler, winning all five races, and subsequently the dominating Alpine skier of the season. In the Women’s Standing category, Woolstencroft won the World Cup Rankings in Slalom, Giant Slalom, Super-G and Downhill, and the overall World Cup Ranking of all races combined. Melania Corradini from Italy won the ranking in Super Combined.
Germany’s Gerd Schoenfelder was as successful as Woolstencroft this season in the Men’s Standing category. Schoenfelder won the final Giant Slalom and Slalom races in Whistler, and finished first in all World Cup Point Lists, except the Slalom Point List where Vincent Gauthier-Manuel from France managed to take first place, followed by Adam Hall from New Zealand and Schoenfelder respectively.
The Women’s Sitting category was dominated by Austrian skier Claudia Loesch and Laurie Stephens from the USA. Loesch placed third in the final Giant Slalom race of the season, first in the Slalom, and as a result, she placed first in the Slalom World Cup Rankings. Loesch also won the Super Combined World Cup and the overall World Cup Ranking. Laurie Stephens took first place in Friday’s Giant Slalom race and was first in the Downhill and the Giant Slalom World Cup Point Lists.
The Men’s Sitting category saw many different winners this season. The Slalom World Cup Point List was won by Harald Eder (AUT), whereas Japanese Taiki Morii placed first in the Giant Slalom World Cup Point List. The speed disciplines were dominated by USA’s skiers, with Christopher Devlin-Young winning the Super-G World Cup and Tyler Walker taking the Downhill World Cup. German Martin Braxenthaler finished first in the Super Combined World Cup and managed to repeat his win in the overall World Cup from last season, just 13 points ahead of Morii.
After winning the last Giant Slalom race of the season on Friday, Canadian Vivian Forest and her guide Lindsay Debou managed to win the Giant Slalom, Downhill, Super Combined and overall World Cup Rankings this season in the Women’s Visually Impaired category. Henrieta Farkasova and her guide Natalia Subrtova from Slovakia won Saturday’s Slalom and finished first in the Super-G World Cup Point List. The Slalom World Cup was won by Anna Cohi from Spain and her guide Raquel Garcia.
Jon Santacana (ESP) together with his guide Miguel Galindo dominated the Men’s Visually Impaired category, winning the overall World Cup Rankings, and the Giant Slalom, Super-G, Downhill and Super Combined World Cup Point Lists. The Slalom World Cup was won by Jakub Krako (SVK) and his guide Juraj Medera, who won Friday’s Giant Slalom race.
The overall Nation Ranking was won, for the first time, by Canada, followed by Austria and the USA.
Two days after the One-Year Countdown celebrations for the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games, the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) completed its operational testing at the IPC Alpine Skiing World Cup Finals. The event also marks the final Paralympic Sport event for VANOC, and the last event at Whistler Creekside – official competition venue for Alpine Skiing in 2010.