Hirscher winning his 20th GS ahead of Olsson and Luitz
Lately, the Giant Slalom is marked by a duel between Alexis Pinturault and Marcel Hirscher, the two racers sharing 13 wins in the last 16 races in that discipline. Today’s race on the Kandahar in Garmisch-Partenkirchen was a little different, with Marcel Hirscher claiming the win and continuing the streak, but surrounded by two surprise guests Matts Olsson and Stefan Luitz.
Alexis Pinturault had a solid first run, but couldn’t make the decisive difference yet, with only a small +0.09 margin over main contender Marcel Hirscher. In the second run he struggled and fell back in fourth position.
The win went to Austira’s Marcel Hirscher, who earned his 20th Giant Slalom win on the Kandahar today. With his 20th victory in slalom claimed last week in Kitzbuehel, Hirscher became the second man to reach 20 World Cup wins in two different disciplines, feat achieved only by Ingemar Stenmark so far. Hirscher also made a big step forward in the Overall standings, where he is in the lead with 1260 points, followed by Kristoffersen with 828 points.
Surprising third after the first run, Sweden’s Matts Olsson confirmed his excellent shape in the second run and finished in second place. Coming back from an ACL injury contracted last season, Olsson is signing another strong result, after a 6th place in Adelboden. The Swede’s best result so far was 4th place in the Giant Slalom in St-Moritz 2014, so he will definitively be one to watch in the upcoming World Championships.
Local Stefan Luitz delighted the crowd with his 4th career podium. Despite good and constant results last year and this season, the German didn’t manage to create the exploit and climb on the podium again since his third place in Are 2014. But something triggered in front of his home crowd and after a great performance in the first run (5th, +0.96 behind), Luitz managed to hold on to a podium placement and ranked third.
With only two Giant Slaloms to go (in Kranjska Gora and at the Finals in Aspen), the fight for the discipline globe promises to be exciting, as Marcel Hirscher is leading with a 97 points margin over Alexis Pinturault, who is eager to claim his first Giant Slalom globe.
One last World Cup race is scheduled before the World Championships in St.Moritz: the City Event in Stockholm. The 16 ladies and the 16 men who qualified for the event will meet on Hammarbybacken on Tuesday evening from 17.00 CET on.