Day 1 Highlights: World Para Alpine Skiing World Cup, Zagreb, Croatia

Marie Bochet extended her unbeaten run on the first day (8 January) of competition at the season’s second World Para Alpine Skiing World Cup in Zagreb, Croatia, with an overwhelming victory in the women’s slalom standing. France’s four-time Sochi 2014 gold medallist (2:01.78), who claimed four victories at the first World Cup in Kuhtai, Austria, only two weeks before, was the fastest in both runs with times of 59.89 and 1:01.89. She was followed by Slovakia’s Petra Smarzova (2:10.55) and neutral athlete Mariia Papulova (2:11.93), who completed the podium. Martin Wuerz (1:52.39) was the surprising winner in the men’s equivalent. The Austrian achieved the first World Cup victory in his career, followed by France’s two-time 2017 world champion Arthur Bauchet (1:52.56) and neutral skier Aleksei Bugaev (1:52.60). Austria celebrated a second gold through two-time Paralympic champion Claudia Loesch (2:07.68) in the women’s sitting. Switzerland’s Stephani Victor (2:19.61) finished second. Poland’s Igor Sikorski (1:51.18) won the men’s sitting, his first World Cup victory since December 2016. Home favourite Dino Sokolovic (1:51.44) and USA’s Tyler Walker (1:52.38) rounded off the podium. The men’s visually impaired produced an unexpected result as none of Slovakia’s leading candidates Miroslav Haraus, Jakub Krako or Marek Kubacka reached the podium. Neutral athletes Valerii Redkozubov (1:52.91) and Ivan Frantsev (1:53.92) ended first and second, respectively. Austria’s Gernot Morgenfurt (2:00.63) collected bronze. Slovakian Henrieta Farkasova (2:00.75) did not disappoint and won the women’s visually impaired ahead of South Korea’s Jae Rim Yang (2:14.08), who is hoping to reach her best form ahead of her home Paralympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, in March. Australia’s Melissa Perrine was disqualified in her second run and could not make it to the podium. Competition at the Zagreb World Cup will finish on Tuesday (9 January) with more slalom events across all men’s and women’s categories.