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RACING STARTS... THEN STOPS - James Cove, PlanetSKI Editor
Saturday October 27, 2018 - Email this article to a friend

The men's World Cup GS race was cancelled on Sunday due to the weather. The women were luckier on Saturday. PlanetSKI reports. UPDATED



It is the curtain raiser for the world Cup season and a sign of early form - the GS races on the glacier in Soelden in the Tirol in Austria.

Heavy snow is now battering the Alps with poor visibility and first thing this morning the men's event was sadly called off.

There had been up to 50cm of snow overnight and striong winds with no let up in the forecast.

The organisers decided it was unsafe for the racers.

"Winter is here, the season can start, but not for the men's World Cup. Today's giant slalom had to be cancelled due to heavy snowfall and strong winds," said a statement from the race organisers.

And here's why:

Sunday in SoeldenSunday in Soelden






















There had been talk of holding racing on Friday due to the forecast, but that did not happen.

The men's race will now be re-scheduled.

The women were luckier on Saturday.

There was an inspection first thing in the morning and the course was declared fit for racing, albeit with a lower start gate.

Let the racing beginLet the racing begin



























It was won by Tessa Worley from France with the Italian Federica Brignone in second place and Mikaela Shiffrin in third.

On the podiumOn the podium

























The Top FiveThe Top Five


























This season it looks like Mikeala Shiffrin will be the dominant racer with Viktoria Rebensburg from Germany and Tessa Worley of France snapping at her heals.

Eyes will be on Lindsey Vonn who will retire at the end of the season.

She will be trying to beat record for the number of World Cup vistories held by Ingemark Stenmark, 86.

Vonn has 82.

The GB racer, Alex Tilley, took part but did not qulaify for the second run in Soelden.

Six of Tilley's ten best career World Cup results came last season, including a 13th in Courchevel where she was fifth-fastest in the second run to prove her potential when she's racing at her peak.

Charlie Raposo from Team GB  was planning a trip to Austria for the opening World Cup of his campaign, however he has chosen not to rush back from a niggling back injury with the target of returning to competition closer to full fitness.

Alex Tilley, photo c/o Vanessa FryAlex Tilley, photo c/o Vanessa Fry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The men will have to wait another day to see who is in early-season form.

Marcel Hirscher is the man to beat this season and has won an unprecedented seven Alpine Skiing World Cup overall titles in a row.

His challengers are Henrik Kristoffersen of Norway, Switzerland's Beat Feuz, Olympic super-G champion Matthias Mayer and Pyeongchang 2018 downhill gold medallist Aksel Lund Svindal.

Hirscher has been voted skier of the year for 2018 by the international association of ski journalists. 

Hirscher succeeds Mikaela Shiffrin, who won the award last year.

Hirscher becomes the second athlete after Pirmin Zurbriggen from Switzerland to receive the award for a fourth time.

Meanwhile If you want to check out our other report on the storm then see this rolling article as we track the storm:
And here's a preview of the racing weekend posted earlier:

Preparations have been going on across the autumn with snow stored and protected under covers.

The organisers will be please at least one race was able to be held, but disappointed about the other after all the hard work put in.

September in SoeldenSeptember in Soelden

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"With the turn of the calendar to October and the clocks adjusted to winter time, along with the conclusion of the Southern Hemisphere season and the autumn chill in the air, it can only mean that it is time for us to turn our attention to the start of the FIS World Cup seasons," said the Presidne tof FIS Gian Franco Kasper.

"This week, the focus of the entire winter sports family will be on Sölden (AUT) for the traditional opening of the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup, where the first two races will be staged along with dozens of press conferences, officially ushering in the winter season."

"I am particularly excited for this upcoming season as the FIS World Ski Championships are set to take centre stage."

See the link below for his full message including warnings and worries about climate change.

See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the mountains.

For the Spirit of the Mountains - PlanetSKI: Number One for ski news

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