Ofner and Zangerl win 2014 Austrian SX title
Styrian Katrin Ofner and Tyrol's Thomas Zangerl claimed the 2014 season's Austrian National ski cross title on Stubai glacier last Friday.
Ofner came in first ahead of Andrea Zemanova (CZE) and Aude Aguilaniu (BEL) thus taking home her seventh career win ahead of fourth-ranked Andrea Limbacher and Christina Staudinger, both from Upper Austria.
Ofner won all of her three heats thus securing the Gold deservedly.
“My perfect starts laid the foundation to victory. Winning here gives me a nice boost in confidence for the World Cup opener in Canada in two weeks,” said Ofner.
Andrea Limbacher, who celebrated a solid comeback after her knee injury last January (ACL), explained: “That was my personal acid test. And it went fine. I felt good in my heats and was able two win twice. So, missing the start in the finals a bit doesn't really matter.”
On the men's side, Zangerl finished the finals in third position behind of Russia's Egor Korotkov and Sergey Mozhaev thus celebrating his career's second after 2012.
It was a perfect start to the new season for the 30-year-old who finally overcame his back problems from last season, which appeared to be rheumatism:
“It means a lot to me being finally able to race without any pain again. Although I'm a bit behind regarding the training, the momentum looks good and I want to keep that.”
His Tyrolean team mates Christoph Wahrstötter (fourth) and Andreas Matt (sixth) rounded out the National Championships podium.
Wahrstötter, the 2013 champion, stated: “I wanted to keep hold to my title, so I'm a little bit disappointed. But it's good to see Thomas, who fas fighting a lot, back on track."