Marsaglia lands first vicrory and makes it two in a row for Italy
BEAVER CREEK, USA - It's the second day of racing on the Birds of Prey and the Italians are on fire once again! Matteo Marsaglia lands his first career podium and makes it a victory at the Birds of Prey. With a time of 1 minute, 14.68 seconds he beat Aksel Lund Svindal by 0.27 seconds and .70 seconds ahead of Hannes Reichelt from Austria.
“What a day! I have been close to the podium last year so I knew I could do it, especially in Super G and I have always loved this slope,” an excited Marsaglia said after it had been clear that noone would be beating his time.
“I pushed more than 100% and I still can’t believe it. Four years ago when I did my first training run on the Birds of Prey, I knew I would like this slope – I came down with a huge smile on my face, I was so excited. Whenever I got asked what was my favorite slope I used to say it’s the Birds of Prey, and that was before I won here so now it is going to have a special place in my heart. “
For a skier that despite being injured almost every season managed to always ski a few fast races a season, Marsaglia knew a podium and victory were waiting for him somewhere, but he is also very cautious about setting some realistic expectations for the rest of the season.
“Now I want to go race by race, at the finals last year in Schladming I was leading until the last intermediate but I made a mistake and finished fourth. With this victory today my goal will be to finish the season among the top seven guys and do well at the World Championships in Garmisch.”
Svindal has earned himself two victories and two second places during the North American races and he couldn’t be happier about it. I am happy with how my race went and with my second place, I was doing really well until a big mistake at the bottom cost me the victory. Today it was me, Jansrud and Innerhofer that could have challenged Marsaglia, we were all fast until we did mistakes and Marsaglia didn’t – that’s how you win races!”
He also praised Marsaglia for being willing to risk it all today.
“I think often here you can have victories from young races willing to risk and Marsaglia did just that. Before today he was not in the run for the discipline title so he had nothing to lose. Now he is in the Cup standings and that changes things.”
Reichelt was happy with his third place, especially on a slope where according to the Austrian athlete “the biggest challenge was finding the right balance between being smooth and risking it all.”
Today’s race saw a fair share of DNFs, two of which – Max Franz from Austria and Natko Zrncic-Dim from Croatia needed medical attention and an update will be given on their injuries when provided by the respective Federations.
Tomorrow it's time for the Giant Slalom and the big question is - can Ted Ligety make it a victory in front of the home crowd?
by Ana Jelusic