Chongarov leads qualifiers into men's GS

17 February 2011 21:02

With so much to gain yet so much to lose, Thursday’s Qualification race for the Men’s World Championship Giant Slalom was won by 21-year-old Bulgarian Nikola Chongarov. Like the women’s Giant Slalom being held on the next hill over, fog played a major part in the race: from being delayed from its original start time to the hard work the course workers all put in through out the two runs. With the top 25 finishers getting a ticket to race in the main race, pressure was on racers to finish and make it into the main event. For the top-seeded racers it was a case of getting the job done without fuss, for those around the cut off point this was a race that they had to keep their focus for.

As the sun burnt the clouds off, the softening conditions gave some of the lesser known racers an opportunity to make the cut with an early start in the second run. In the end just four racers from outside the top 25 seeds managed to make the draw for the race on Friday. With 25 nations who did not already have a racer in the main draw providing one more racer, 100 racers should go to the start (two have subsequently withdrawn).

From the serious to the exotic, the focus for all was staying clean and fast. Jean Pierre Roy from Haiti, the last man down on the second run received loud support as one of the fastest guys on the second run. Fifty one nations from the skiing family looked to do their best.

Chongarov (Bulgaria), Siroki (Croatia) and Jenot (Monaco) headed a triumvirate of British racers as the top six in the race. All six gave the “Job Done,” response after the race.

by Neil McQuoid, Racer Ready