ADELBODEN, Switzerland (Jan. 10, 2015)—It was a warm day at the Audi FIS Ski World Cup in Adelboden, following a night of heavy rain. And even with the race crew working around the clock, the conditions were rough for the giant slalom. Fighting against the bumpy, salted course, Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) took seventh and Tim Jitloff (Reno, NV) 14th. Austria's Marcel Hirscher took the win.
Hirscher of Austria grabbed his sixth victory this season, beating the field by over a second. The Frenchman Alex Pinturault—with “Je Suis Charlie” written on his helmet—took second and Henrik Kristoffersen from Norway was third.
BAD KLEINKIRCHHEIM, Austria (Jan. 10, 2015) - An early morning windstorm shredded the race hill and finish area at Bad Kleinkirchheim, forcing FIS officials to cancel Saturday's scheduled Audi FIS Ski World Cup downhill. Sunday's super G is still in the plans with ongoing discussion on whether the downhill can be replaced next weekend in Cortina. The windstorm also delayed Lindsey Vonn's (Vail, CO) run at a record 62nd World Cup win.
While the track was hard and firm, it was getting warm in Bad Kleinkirchheim, with rain overnight followed by warm wind Saturday morning. Damage along the race course was widespread but officials are hopeful in running Sunday's super G.
BAD KLEINKIRCHHEIM, Austria (Jan. 9, 2014) - The women have landed in Bad Kleinkirchheim, Austria and with Lindsey Vonn's (Vail, CO) record hanging in wait, the excitement about the race is palpable. Although it has been an uphill battle, with lost baggage, sicknesses and flat light, the girls are battling their bad luck and looking for speed.
PARK CITY, UT (Jan. 7, 2015) – The U.S. Alpine Ski Team has made a change in its women’s coaching staff. Alpine Director Patrick Riml taking over interim management of the women’s slalom/giant slalom team, overseeing current staff including Assistant Coach Gary Miller as well as Strength and Conditioning Coach Luca de Marchi.
“We felt that a change was important to create the best team dynamics and stability, providing focus for Mikaela Shiffrin and our other U.S. athletes,” said Riml. “Roland Pfeiffer will be re-assigned to another position within our program where we can continue to use his skills.”
Shiffrin has won the last two World Cup slaloms. The technical team has only one competition prior to the World Championships, with a night slalom in Flachau, Austria next Tuesday, Jan. 12.
Ski racers Ronnie Berlack and Bryce Astle were young men taken too soon in an avalanche accident in Soelden, Austria on January 5, 2014. USSA columnist Tom Kelly takes a look at their lives in this week's Behind the Gold.
Ronnie Berlack and Bryce Astle grew up almost a continent apart. Ronnie was raised in a ski racing family in Franconia, NH, as a kid watching hometown hero Bode Miller make his rise to ski stardom. He later moved to Burke Mountain Academy, where his dad was a ski coach.Born in California, Bryce Astle moved to Utah as a child. A typical weekend routine was making the quick trek from the family home in Sandy up Little Cottonwood Canyon to Alta and Snowbird. Ski racing became a big part of the Astle household.
ZAGREB, Croatia (Jan. 6, 2015)—It was a tough evening in Zagreb, Croatia for the U.S. Ski Team men, who are still comprehending Monday’s devastating news from Soelden, Austria. No Americans finished the Audi FIS Ski World Cup night slalom, with only Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) and David Chodounsky (Crested Butte, CO) qualifying for a second run.
The injected hill in Zagreb was icy and unforgiving, coupled with fog and low visibility. But with 10,000 people cheering them into the finish, the atmosphere was electric. Running bullet, Marcel Hirscher from Austria threw down a lightning fast first run that no one could catch—finishing .81 seconds ahead of Felix Neureuther of Germany overall. Sebastian-Foss Solevaag of Norway was in third.
SOELDEN, Austria (Jan. 5, 2015) – The U.S. Ski Team is mourning the loss of two promising development-level ski racers killed Monday in an avalanche in Soelden. The two were among a group of six athletes freeskiing at the Austrian resort. The other four skied out of the slide.
Killed in the avalanche were Ronnie Berlack, 20 (Franconia, NH and Burke Mountain, VT) and Bryce Astle, 19 (Sandy, UT).
“Ronnie and Bryce were both outstanding ski racers who were passionate about their sport – both on the race course and skiing the mountain,” said U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association President and CEO Tiger Shaw. “Our hearts go out to the Berlack and Astle families, as well as to their extended sport family. Both of them loved what they did and conveyed that to those around them.”