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World Cup Snowsports Continues but with Some Disruption

The ski and snowboard programme for 2020-21 has suffered more disruption for both Covid-19 and weather-related reasons.  But there’s some good news too. UPDATED

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The competition schedule has had a whole load of changes forced on it in the last few weeks, causing headaches for the organisers and the International Ski Federation (FIS).

The full list of the recent changes has been published by FIS and we reproduce it below.

First, the good news: World Cup alpine and freestyle skiing is taking place in the next few days.

Alpine

There are back to back women’s slalom races in Levi, Finland, on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd November.

The Swedish Team will not be competing as they have all had to quarantine after a coach, Christian Thoma, tested positive for Covid-19.

The Swede, Anna Swenn-Larsson, was one of the favourites for a podium place.

She won slalom silver at the 2019 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships.

The squad is in isolation in Finland.

“We are currently in contact with the Finnish health authorities to try to find a solution to bring home our staff and our skiers,” national team manager Tommy Eliasson said, per SVT.

Mikaela Shiffrin due to be in action for the first time this season.

Mikaela Shiffrin

Mikaela Shiffrin

“This spring, summer, fall, this period since I last raced has been the busiest, most stressful time of my life,” Shiffrin said to the Associated Press.

“I feel like racing is actually going to be like going on a vacation.

“Right now, I am just grateful to be here.”

GB Snowsport Competing Athletes:

Charlie Guest (Slalom) – World Class Programme athlete
Alex Tilley (Slalom) – World Class Programme athlete

Usually, Levi hosts a men’s slalom where GB’s own Dave ‘The Rocket’ Ryding gets his first taste of competition for the season.  However, FIS announced in September that the men’s race was being postponed and rescheduled for later in the season

That decision followed the news that all the alpine races scheduled to take place in North America would not go ahead.

Who to watch at Levi this weekend….

After Levi this weekend, there is some more alpine action to look forward to.

Our pick includes the men and women’s parallel event in Lech, Austria, on 26th and 27th November.

Then there’s a feast of skiing in Val d’Isere in France from 5th to 20th December.

The Criterium de la Premiere Neige has been given the go ahead.

This year there will be Giant Slalom, Downhill and Super G races.

The series of men’s and women’s races would normally attract big crowds of locals and early season holidaymakers but this year they will take place ‘behind closed doors’.

No crowds this year

They get under way just four days after the current lockdown in France is expected to end.

PlanetSKI was there in 2017.

Sadly, there’s no slalom in Val d’Isere this December.

Dave Ryding and the rest of the technical specialists will have to wait until 21st December for the first traditional men’s slalom race which is at Alta Badia in the Italian Dolomites.

Freestyle

The first ski slopestyle action of the season kicks off up on the glacier at Stubai in Austria.

Both the men and the women will compete this Friday 20th and Saturday 21st November.

It’s a discipline in which Great Britain usually puts up a strong contingent.

GB Snowsport Competing Athletes:

 Tyler Harding – World Class Programme Athlete

  • Chris McCormick – World Class Programme Athlete
  • Kirsty Muir – World Class Programme Athlete
  • Katie Summerhayes – – World Class Programme Athlete
  • Justin Taylor-Tipton – – World Class Programme Athlete

One of the GB Park & Pipe Squad who is in Stubai, Katie Summerhayes, is raring to go.

“Had a good two weeks back skiing @primeparksessions. Now it’s time to get back into the bib!” she said on Tuesday.

Katie Summerhayes in Stubai this week – photo Jamie Matthew

Katie, who’s 25, returned from a long injury layoff in January and managed three top 10s before Covid-19 brought the competitive season to an abrupt end.

“It was frustrating because I felt like I had just got back into the swing of things. March and April is the best time to be on snow because of the conditions so I was really gutted to miss that,” Katie told the BBC.

You can read the full interview with Katie and her younger sister and fellow Winter Olympian Molly, who is now training to be a police officer, on the BBC Sport website.

There is also Nordic skiing to enjoy over the next few day with GB athletes in competition.

FIS Races – Beitostolen (Norway) – 20th – 22nd November 2020

GB Snowsport Competing Athletes:

James Clugnet – World Class Programme athlete
Andrew Musgrave – World Class Programme athlete
Andrew Young – World Class Programme

FIS Latest Changes to the Schedule

Alpine
Nov 13-14 Lech/Zürs (AUT) Women’s & Men’s PAR Postponed to Nov. 26-27
Cross-Country
Nov. 04-06 Lillehammer (NOR) Men’s/Women’s SP, Skt, Rel Postponed, new dates TBA
Ski Jumping
Nov. 04-06 Lillehammer (NOR) Women’s Postponed, new dates TBA
Jan. 08-10 Sapporo (JPN) Women’s Cancelled, new venue TBA
Jan. 14-17 Zao (JPN) Women’s Cancelled
Jan. 29-31 Hinterzarten (GER) Women’s Changed to Titisee-Neustadt
Feb. 05-07 Sapporo (JPN) Men’s Cancelled, new venue TBA
Nordic Combined
Nov. 04-06 Lillehammer (NOR) Men’s/Women’s Postponed, new dates TBA
Freestyle
Nov. 27-28 Beijing (CHN) BA Cancelled
Dec. 03-05 Val Thorens (FRA) SX Postponed to Dec. 19-20
Dec.14-16 Arosa (SUI) SX 1 additional event
Dec. 18-20 Innichen (ITA) SX Cancelled
Jan. 14-16 Seiser Alm (AUT) Slopestyle Cancelled
Jan. 20-24 Idre Fjäll (SWE) SX 1 additional event
Mar 13-14 Krasnoyarsk MO & AE Cancelled
Snowboard
Nov. 27-28 Beijing (CHN) BA Cancelled
Dec. 05-06 Bannoye (RUS) PGS, PSL Postponed to Feb. 06-07
Dec. 18-20 Cervinia (ITA) SBX Postponed, new dates TBA
Jan. 14-16 Seiser Alm (AUT) Slopestyle Cancelled
Feb. 06-07 Blue Mountain (CAN) PGS, PSL Cancelled

 

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