Ledecka and Sobolev triumph in Cortina d'Ampezzo
Ester Ledecka (CZE) and Andrey Sobolev (RUS) have claimed victory in the 2016-17 alpine snowboard World Cup tour's first parallel slalom which was staged in a single run format and under the lights in the famous ski resort of Cortina d'Ampezzo (ITA).
The Czech and the Russian racer, both dedicated with 2015 world championships titles, stepped up their game after losing the World Cup openers big finals two days ago therefore taking over the lead in the alpine snowboard overall World Cup ranking.
Ledecka, the only athlete to compete on both, the snowboard and alpine World Cup tour, held the upper hand in the women's final over Austrian racer Daniela Ulbing bringing home her career's seventh win.
“It was a great race, I really liked the course and the setting. This evening was magic. I'm happy that I was here, and winning was a great bonus,” she said with a smile.
Defeated Daniela Ulbing was also more than happy despite missing her first ever win due to a riding mistake. In the end, 18-year-old up-and-coming talent secured her career's best World Cup result with her first podium in her tenth appearance.
“I'm very pleased with the race. Today, everything finally worked out - just like I wished. I'm super happy about my first podium. Maybe that's why I can't really say anything else,” the second-best qualifier stated.
Local favourite Nadya Ochner (ITA) did once again well on the Tondi slope adding a third rank to her last year's second place finish.
Sobolev with redemption
Over in the men's event, Sobolev edged off Italy's national hero and last year's second placed rider Roland Fischnaller to the runner-up position with the tiny mere of 0.08 seconds therefor celebrating the best possible redemption for his last year's performance when he had missed finals clearly as 29th:
“Today, I feel absolutely great. I really wanted to get redemption from last year. I did the best and won. I'm feeling great.”
And also Fischnaller – although beaten super close – had all reasons to feel great in front of a stellar home crowd as it was the 36-year-old veteran's 30th career podium finish:
“I'm very pleased with the result especially as it is my career's 30th. I did a small mistake in the transition to the flat, that's why I came in just a little bit too late to snatch the win. But that's OK, I'm pleased finishing on the podium.”
Carezza winner Benjamin Karl (AUT) rounded out the podium as third.
The alpine snowboard World Cup tour will now take a break over the festive season returning in Bad Gastein (AUT) on January 10 and 11, 2017, where the second parallel slalom and first parallel slalom team event are slated to take place.