In just her second season on the Audi FIS Ski Cross World Cup tour, Germany's Daniella Maier has already established herself as one of the fastest, boldest, and most exciting skiers in freestyle, and with the 20-year-old pushing the pace the German team appears to be rising up across the board.
Names ski cross "Rookie of the Year" in 2015/16, Maier proceeded to charge into 2016/17 with a vendetta, opening the season with a fifth-place and then a third-place performance at the season-opening back-to-back races in Val Thorens (FRA).
The third in Val Thorens was the first podium of her career, and she very nearly captured her second just a week later in Montafon (AUT). However, Maier wiped out when looking to make a daring pass into second place near the bottom of the course and was forced to settle for fourth.
Still, with three top-5s in four events to start the season, Maier is riding high on the Audi FIS Ski Cross World Cup leaderboard, behind the likes of only Marielle Thompson (CAN), Anna Holmlund (SWE), and Sandra Naeslund (SWE), putting her in some elite company indeed at this stage of the season.
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