Another day of action on Corviglia
The FIS Alpine World Ski Championships was full of action on the slopes as the Men’s Giant Slalom got underway. Race favourites Marcel Hirscher (AUT) and Alexis Pinturault (FRA) took first and third spots in the first run separated by fellow Austrian Philipp Schörghofer in front of the 15,000 strong crowds.
Then it was straight onto the excitement of the second run - what was not expected was that two of the medals would come from athletes initially lying in 6th and 7th! Austrian Roland Leitinger and Norwegian Leif Kristian Haugen produced confident displays of Giant Slalom racing to momentarily clinch the first two positions, but with five athletes still remaining one would have thought they would not remain there for long?
As snow started to fall from the skies, athlete after athlete failed to reproduce the performance from their first run, generally loosing out at time check 3. With just Marcel Hitscher to go everybody was waiting with bated breath. But Marcel was without doubt the champion and propelled himself through the finish with 0.25 second in front of the rest. Pinturault was dismayed with his run to finish in seventh. So it was Austria, Austria, Norway! Best of the Swiss was Justin Murisier in eighth.
Jubilation of the day: “Hallelujah” – Roland Leitinger was full of delight following his second run propelling him into the lead at his first World Championships – at that point could he have imagined that he would end up with the silver? What a day for Roland and for Austria.
Pirouette of the day: Wearing bib number 24, Tommy Ford (USA) turned a pirouette on his first run. Figure skaters were almost left pale with envy but unfortunately this show resulted in an early departure for the American.
Word combination of the day: "Empty and stretched", were the words SRG co-commentator Bernhard Russi used to describe Canadian Erik Read’s form. His colleague, Matthias Hüppi, retorted that this was a terrible thing to say. Erik Read saved himself from this momentary position and still qualified for the second run finishing the day in 23rd. Erik is the son of Ken Read. In the 1970s he formed the so-called Crazy Canucks together with Jim Hunter, Dave Irwin, Dave Murray and Steve Podborski, the big rivals of Russi.
Weather of the day: Varying weather conditions in the first run benefited some athletes whilst the Swiss were possibly disadvantaged. Thereafter conditions in the