Pinturault tops the 1st run at Val d'Isère's GS
After very successful races last week-end on the O.K. course last week, Val d’Isère is now hosting its traditional “Criterium de la première neige” with a tech races on “La Face” in the very centre of the village. The first run of the Giant Slalom just came to an end, and Frenchman Alexis Pinturault is in the lead, ahead of Stefan Luitz and Marcel Hirscher.
Pinturault wasn’t feeling very confident following a hand injury contracted in training on Thrusday and had to ski with a bandaged hand to hold his poles. Nevertheless, he charged the challenging course and crossed the finish line with a sizable margin over his teammates Faivre (bib 1, +1.60) and Muffat-Jeandet (bib 2, +1.63).
Marcel Hirscher, who came down right after Pinturault, managed to limit the damage and ended +0.67 and finished the first run in third place. Even though he stood on the podium in the two first Giant Slaloms of the season, the winner of last year’s discipline standings is eager to grab his first victory, especially as he could already celebrate three wins here, one of them being his first ever World Cup victory back in 2009.
A surprise guest claimed a Top 3 spot in that first run, it’s Germany’s Stefan Luitz. His best World Cup performance so far was a second place in the very same Giant Slalom in 2012. Let’s see if the 24 years young Luitz can withstand the pressure in the second run and maybe ski to his best result ever.
Second run of the Val d’Isère giant slalom starts at 12.30, make sure you tune it to follow the decision of this 3rd GS of the season.