Last Olympic qualifier chance for raceboarders in Slovenia
Season's second PGS in Rogla | Race for Overall World Cup in crunch mode
The second parallel giant slalom of the current FIS Alpine Snowboard World Cup season scheduled for next Saturday, January 18, is characterised by the battle for national Olympic team spots.
The world's best raceboarders will get their last chance in Rogla, Slovenia, to bring forward some more arguments for their nomination for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games.
But the battle for the Sochi tickets is not everything the riders have in mind as the FIS Alpine Snowboard World Cup tour is also entering crunch mode with the penultimate stop of this winter.
Right now, 2014 PSL World Cup title winner Patrizia Kummer (SUI) leads the race for the PGS World Cup Crystal Globe with 1,000 points on the women's side while Anton Unterkofler (AUT) sits in first on the men's side of things with 1,000 points.
The Swiss carving specialist is also in favour for the big Crystal Globe awarded to the best athlete of the FIS Alpine Snowboard World Cup ranking having cumulated a total of 3,400 points so far. On the men's side, Zan Kosir (SLO) looks promising with 2,050 points.
Top-3 riders of last year with mixed seasons so far
But there are a few more riders who should be on the list for the Rogla event, too, as they might have the best memories with the 450 metres long course on Jasa slope.
Reigning PSL World Champion Ekaterina Tudegesheva (RUS), who has to podium finishes to her belt this season already, won last year edging off 2010 Olympic Champion Nicolien Sauerbreij (NED) and Claudia Riegler (AUT), who both haven't hit form yet, to second and third respectively.
Men's Rogla title defender Roland Fischnaller (ITA) is also out of shape right now.
The South Tyrolean carving specialist who brought home two coveted medals from the 2013 FIS Snowboard World Championships has missed three out of four finals of the top-16 this season already and is eager to finally turn things around.
In contrary, 2013 second and third ranked male athletes Zan Kosir and 2014 PSL World Cup title winner Sylvain Dufour (FRA) call the shots so far this winter and are those among the circle of top aspirants for another podium result at Saturday's PGS.
The qualification starts at 9:30 AM CET with the re-run format finals scheduled for 1:30 PM CET. Check this link for the preliminary Rogla programme.