Double victory for Italy in Zagreb: Razzolli wins, Moelgg 2nd
It was an Italian night at the Sljeme summit of Zagreb's female bear mountain: Italy's Giuliano Razzoli posted two consistent runs - 2nd fastest first run and 6th fastest second run - to claim his career first World Cup win ahead of teammate Manfred Moelgg, 0.23s behind. Julien Lizeroux of France was third, just under half a second behind the leader, after a smooth second run which popped him up from 5th.
An impressive opening run gave the two-time winner (Levi & Alta Badia) Reinfried Herbst a solid lead. However a major mistake in the so-called filter at the end of the first steep part cost him the hat trick and a disappointed Herbst finished fifth.
For Razzoli, Zagreb seems to be a good place. After earning his very first podium at the Snow Queen Trophy last year, the Italian improved to the top of the podium on Wednesday and was rewarded with a €50'000 paycheck.
The 4th placed Slovenian Mitja Valencic also posted a career-best finish thanks to a strong 2nd run.
"My first victory. I am happy. It is incredible for me," said the 24-year Italian in elation at the finish. "Fantastic day, fantastic slope, fantastic people. Last year was podium and today victory, It is incredible for me."
For the Italians it was a second double victory within a fortnight after Max Blardone and Davide Simoncelli took 1-2 in the Alta Badia GS before Christmas. For Manfred Moelgg the 2nd place was another good result following the third place finish in the Val d'Isère super combined in mid-December. A promising tendency given that the World Cup schedule features a full schedule with five more slaloms in Adelboden, Wengen, Kitzbühel, Schladming and Kranjska Gora, all by the end of January.