An excerpt ofthe full interview held with Denise Karbon for Ready Set Sport
Denise Karbon, an Italian skiing legend, has spoken with Daphne Seberich for Ready Set Sport about her career, her most memorable success and her passion about skiing. The excerpt of the interview was featured on Episode 4 of the Fresh Air Podcast on February 25th, 2021.
Mathieu Faivre completely turned his season around after the 2021 Cortina FIS Alpine World Ski Championship wins, dominating the Giant Slalom discipline. In only twelve days, the Frenchman has won two out of three competitions, scoring a podium in all of them.
By Daphne Seberich
Bansko day two. A perfect day with perfect weather saw the reigning Giant Slalom World Champion Mathieu Faivre annihilate his competition. The Bulgarian ski resort hosted an exciting race for the athletes and viewers at home, with the Top-10 battling it out for valuable FIS World Cup points.
After finishing in second place in Saturday’s Giant Slalom, Mathieu Faivre earned his second victory in 12 days, topping Switzerland’s Marco Odermatt by 0.75 seconds. It was the Frenchman’s second career World Cup victory as he has put together the strongest three races of his career with three straight podiums, including the World Championship gold.
Thanks to his seventh World Cup podium of the season, 23-year-old Marco Odermatt made up some lost ground in the challenge for the Overall Crystal Globe, where Bansko’s third-placed athlete Alexis Pinturault commands. The Frenchman has a 210-point lead over the Swiss.
Kicking things off in the first run, the Swiss Loïc Meillard set the bar for the other competitors with a time of 1:11.45. Zan Kranjec couldn’t keep up with the youngster, setting red intermediates throughout his leg. 44 hundredths of a second of delay from the provisional leader secured him second place after two athletes.
Cortina 2021 Giant Slalom World Champion Mathieu Faivre was always behind the time set by Meillard. Impressively, the Frenchman managed to recover six tenths in the lowest part of the piste, earning the provisional lead over the Swiss. Giant Slalom standings leader Alexis Pinturault disappointed, as opposed to his teammate Faivre, ending his run 79 hundredths of a second behind in third.
Saturday’s Bansko winner Filip Zubcic, who’s only 22 points behind Giant Slalom standings leader Pinturault, had the worst possible run we could’ve imagined. At the start of the steepest part of the Bansko slope, the Croatian leaned too deep into one gate, falling with the body towards the snow. He still managed to stay inside of the course set by the Swedish ski national coach Ola Masdal, but his delay was over three seconds.
Third-ranked in the Giant Slalom standings, Marco Odermatt had the same goal as Zubcic: beating Alexis Pinturault. The Bulgarian track, although, proved to be tough for the Crystal Globe contenders. Odermatt only managed to finish in fifth, 1.2 seconds behind the provisional leader Faivre. Frenchman’s teammate Thibaut Favrot then dethroned the Swiss after his run by being one-hundredth of a second ahead of Odermatt.
Speaking of Italian, Luca De Aliprandini, who won the silver medal in the technical discipline on home soil, was not performing as well as in the first Bansko race. 2.21 seconds of delay only secured a provisional Top-10 finish. 6th in Saturday’s Giant Slalom event Manuel Feller, just managed to squeeze between his teammate Schwarz and Filip Zubcic in 14th place. 3.07 seconds of disadvantage from the lead was a disappointing result for the “Wunderteam” skier.
The surprise of the first Bansko competition Stefan Brennsteiner, who managed to score a podium for Austria in Giant Slalom for the first time after the Hirscher era, scored a Top-10 finish.
Same Torsti, who was the bib number 48 wearer and managed to qualify for the inverted session, started the second leg as first. Alex Hofer, who scored a first Top-30 career finish, managed to earn the provisional lead from Finn Torsti by 51 hundredths. A struggling Victor Muffat-Jeandet had to be content with only second place after his run.
Veteran Manfred Mölgg had his comeback, beating his South Tyrolean teammate Hofer by 63 hundredths of a second. Hannes Zingerle, who I interviewed in the Alta Badia race in December (click here for the full video interview), had a really strong performance. He managed to recover a two-tenths disadvantage to finish in first. A provisional 1-2-3 podium result for Italy, until Ivan Kuznetsov from Russia took over the lead of the race.
Swiss Daniele Sette blew it out of the park, crossing the finish line with over 8 tenths of a second ahead of the Russian leader. But his biggest threat was Filip Zubcic, who was set to make a strong recovery to score a Top-10 finish. The goal was to reach ninth place to not lose out on too many points for the Giant Slalom Crystal Globe contention. Unfortunately, Zubcic made a very costly mistake in the final part of the slope that prevented his comeback. His performance was only good enough for second place.
The Swiss provisional leader Sette recovered over eight positions in the second run, a remembrance of Stefan Hadalin’s performance on Saturday. He beat successful athletes like Filip Zubcic, Manuel Feller and Stefan Luitz. His leadership came to an end, as Marco Schwarz crossed the finish line 4 hundredths ahead of Sette’s best time.
Even though Gino Caviezel suffered from a critical mistake in the top part of the course, the Swiss was setting green intermediates throughout his run. The last section of the piste was unfortunately not fast enough to dethrone the Austrian provisional leader. Similar problems occurred to Luca De Aliprandini, who was set to take over the leadership, but too many mistakes prevented him to do so. He finished his run in ex aequo with Caviezel in third.
Photo credits: Hola News & NeveItalia
Henrik Kristoffersen managed to end his attempt one-tenth ahead of Schwarz, but Austrian teammate Stefan Brennsteiner set the perfect run, serving over one second to the Norwegian superstar. His impressive Bansko weekend proved to be the “Wunderteam” athlete’s revelation. Even Alta Badia podium scorer Justin Murisier couldn’t keep up with Brennsteiner’s performance.
Marco Odermatt, who never finished worse than fifth this season in Giant Slalom, didn’t disappoint. 39 hundredths earned him the honor to sit on Audi’s red leader chair. The goal was to recover 4 tenths over Alexis Pinturault, who was third after the first run. He came very close to that result. Favrot and Kranjec couldn’t beat Odermatt’s performance, securing a Top-4 outcome ahead of the Giant Slalom standings leader.
Alexis Pinturault had to be ahead of the Swiss to secure his position in the rankings. His run was mind-blowing, as he seemed to almost lose both his poles like in the first Bansko event. Unfortunately for the Frenchman, the performance was only good for second place, 0.09 seconds behind the Swiss leader.
With over 1.2 seconds of advantage over the provisional leader Odermatt, Mathieu Faivre had an easy task and he never gave the impression of any possibility of losing the race. 0.75 seconds at the finish line secured him the win. In only two days, Faivre scored 180 points valid for the standings.
The rankings are extremely close when it comes to the Giant Slalom Crystal Globe. The same two men of the Overall standings are battling it out with only 25 points between them. Trailing behind is Bansko’s Saturday event winner Filip Zubcic with a 64-point deficit from the top of the leaderboard.
The Giant Slalom athletes will have one last chance at victory in Kranjska Gora before the finals taking place in Lenzerheide from March 15th-21st. Who will have the upper hand in this three-way battle to the top?
Welcome to Fresh Air, the show that takes you from the snowy peaks of the Alps to the sunny shores of Bondi beach.
From the first A,B,C of how to ski to the X, Y, Z to the climbing on the edge. Our podcast is all about introducing you to outdoor sports.
In our fourth episode, we’ll discover everything about a very popular sport, alpine skiing, uncover everything about this amazing sport and its different disciplines, we’ll talk about what happened at the 2021 Cortina D’Ampezzo FIS Alpine World Ski Championships, we’ll take it to the streets, learning about some experiences with the sport, we’ll introduce a brand new section of our show called travel tips and lastly, we have a very special interview that you don’t wanna miss. We’re keeping you on your toes this time.
It’s gonna be a high altitude, high octane and a hell of a ride. You can’t be stopped.
Sebastian Foss-Solevaag went from maiden victory in Flachau to World Champion all in one month. The Norwegian’s chose the right moment to shine at Cortina’s Druscié slope.
By Daphne Seberich
All good things eventually come to an end. The Men’s Slalom event was the grand finale of theCortina D’Ampezzo 2021 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships. The Italian scenery that hosted the biannual FIS Alpine World Ski Championships has been framed by unparalleled beauty and colored in by some of the most spectacular performances seen in ages, from both the favorites and the underdogs. But it will also be remembered for the two weeks in which the rule book was poured over and read by more people than in the history of the sport.
Knowing that the snow on the course was at its limit, FIS already announced the night before the race that instead of the Top-30 starting in reverse order for the second run, it would be limited to the Top-15. The move set up a dramatic first run as the racers aimed to be in the all-important and exclusive Top-15. It also set up a dramatic second run, with everyone within one second of each other in the fight for the gold medal.
Sebastian Foss-Solevaag caught the right opportunity to be in peak performance. The Norwegian scored his second-ever career win in Cortina, after his maiden win in Flachau one month ago.
“It’s a dream, two golds in Cortina. That’s incredible,” Foss-Solevaag said, “We had too many crashes, too many injuries,”. “With a small team, we have two gold medals, that’s very good.”
“It’s amazing to finish off like this,” Foss-Solevaag said, “I knew the two guys in front could also put it together, but I fought from the start to the bottom and I did it.”
Completing the podium was the surprise leader of the first run, Austrian Adrian Pertl in second place. Norwegian teammate Henrik Kristoffersen ended his leg in third. Austria had won five of the six slalom medals at the last two WSC’s, both times with retired standout Marcel Hirscher taking the gold. Pertl came close to continuing the streak.
Photo credits: DiscoveryAlps & Freenewstoday
With bib number one, Alexis Pinturault set the bar for the other competitors with a time of 52.65. Sebastian Foss-Solevaag, the second one to descend the Cortina slope, beat the Frenchman’s fastest time by 2 tenths of a second. The winner of the first Slalom of the season in Alta Badia, Ramon Zenhäusern, crossed the finish line with a 1.49 disadvantage over the provisional leader.
The winner of the latest slalom race in Chamonix, Henrik Kristoffersen, started well with a green intermediate in the first part of the track. Unfortunately, he couldn’t capitalize on the advantage he built and finished his run in second place. Chamonix race winner Clément Noël came close to dethroning Foss-Solevaag, but it wasn’t quite enough for the leadership of the race. He closed in second place.
On-off red bib wearer Manuel Feller had a disappointing performance. 1.62 seconds separated the Austrian and the provisional leader. Marco Schwarz, the favorite to take the gold medal in the race, set two green intermediates but crossed the finish line with 51 hundredths of a second delay. The biggest surprise was Adrian Pertl, who continuously increased his advantage over Foss-Solevaag. Incredulous, he managed to dethrone the leader of the race.
Youngster Loïc Meillard had high hopes for earning a medal but his run was cut short by missing a gate in the second half of the track. Victor Muffat-Jeandet straddled one of the gates, terminating all hopes for a positive result. Brit Dave Ryding was the third athlete in a row to end his attempt prematurely.
Zagreb Slalom winner Linus Straßer never attempted to tackle Pertl in first place. Crossing the line 1.71 seconds behind the leader still granted him the tenth position. Croatian ski star Filip Zubcic, who won a silver medal in the Parallel discipline in Cortina, crossed the finish line two seconds behind the leader.
The biggest surprise of the first run was Alex Vinatzer. After not scoring any points for five races in a row, the South Tyrolean blew it out of the park performing when it mattered. Throughout his run he managed to stay close to Pertl’s time, ending in second place.
Kristoffer Jakobsen’s run seemed to not be enough for a top position, building up his delay throughout his performance. Incredibly, he caught up his gap and crossed 18 hundredths of a second behind Pertl in fourth.
Stefano Gross was having the best run of his season, setting green intermediates section by section. Unfortunately, his outstanding performance didn’t convert into a good placement, as he straddled one of the gates. Maybe he could’ve taken over the leadership if he finalized his run.
Due to concerns regarding the high temperatures in Cortina, FIS decided to invert only the Top-15 instead of the regular 30. To start the second leg was Luke Winters, who unfortunately straddled a gate and DNF’d. The first to complete his run was Istok Rodes from Croatia, setting the bar for the other competitors. Mario Matt seemed to have a good rhythm for the course set by his trainer Marco Pfeiffer. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to earn the provisional leadership.
Slovenian Stefan Hadalin set fastest the fastest time intermediate by intermediate but only crossed the finish line in second place. Daniel Yule did what he had to do and secured the provisional lead 14 hundredths of a second ahead of Rodes.
Shockingly, the favorite to take the win Marco Schwarz straddled a gate and ended his run in a DNF. His performance until that point was impressive, increasing his advantage over Yule intermediate by intermediate. Unfortunately, he couldn’t capitalize and earn a medal.
Alexis Pinturault seemed not to have what it takes to overcome the provisional leader, setting his time 28 hundredths behind Yule in third place. However, who managed to dethrone the provisional leader was Henrik Kristoffersen crossing the finish line 76 hundredths ahead of the Swiss.
Kristoffer Jakobsen, who was looking for the first career podium in Slalom, straddled a gate, cutting his run short. An unfortunate mishap. Sebastian Foss-Solevaag kept his 22 hundredths of a second advantage over Kristoffersen and even increased it in the second half of the track, crossing the finish line 46 hundredths of a second ahead of teammate Kristoffersen.
Italy held their breath for the time Alex Vinatzer skied. At every intermediate he had more insecurities, making little mistakes over and over. His times became red and worsened until he crossed the finish line 1.2 seconds behind Foss-Solevaag in third place.
The leader of the first leg Adrian Pertl was happy to score a silver medal, consolidating the podium with Foss-Solevaag winning gold and Kristoffersen bronze.
With the final Slalom race, the 2021 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships came to an end. Thanks to Pertl’s victory today, Austria came away as the most successful nation in the medal table with five gold medals, one silver and two bronze. The Swiss finished second in the medal hunt with three golds, one silver and five bronze medals. Now the World Cup returns to center stage with the next stop in Bansko (Bulgaria) this upcoming weekend.
Lara Gut-Behrami was just too good compared to the other competitors in the Crans Montana Super G event. She is now the second woman to win World Cup Super G races in three different Swiss venues (St.Moritz, Lenzerheide, Crans Montana).
By Daphne Seberich
Lara Gut-Behrami is back to her winning ways after an astonishing performance in Sunday’s Audi FIS World Cup race. The third Super G event of the 2020/2021 season took place in Switzerland on the Crans Montana slope.
There was no way the other athletes could compete with the Swiss’s speed and racing line. After all, Lara is one of the most successful female skier still active in the Super G discipline. This event secured a new record under her belt. Gut-Behrami is the second woman to win World Cup Super G races in three different Swiss venues (St.Moritz, Lenzerheide, Crans Montana).
For the Swiss speed specialist, it was a mixed bag weekend on home soil. She finished a disappointing 16th place in the first Downhill, only to have her comeback in Saturday’s second event to claim second place. Crans Montana is a venue that suits Gut-Behrami as Sunday’s race was her third victory and fourth podium in the last two seasons at the home nation’s resort.
Gut-Behrami raced a flawless line on the bottom half of the course to earn the victory by nearly one second. Austrian Tamara Tippler continued to impress, earning her second runner-up finish 0.96 seconds behind. Italian Federica Brignone rounded out the podium, raking in her second Super-G Top-three finish of the season.
Bib number one racer and current Overall standings leader Petra Vlhova didn’t have the best start to her run. Shortly after the first intermediate, Vlhova missed a gate after a jump and got disqualified from the race.
Michelle Gisin, the second contender for the Big Crystal Globe, was the first athlete to set the benchmark with a time of 1:18.30. Austrian skier Stephanie Venier challenged the Swiss for the lead but lost control of her body after a jump, crashing into the barriers. Fortunately, no major physical injuries were reported from the Austrian ski team.
Gisin’s teammate Wendy Holdener, who placed 3rd in the Crans Montana Super G in 2018, missed a gate and ended her run prematurely.
Right from the get-go, Federica Brignone showed to have great speed and always sealed green intermediates during her run. A 1.65-second lead ahead of Gisin boosted her into provisional first place.
Crans Montana 2017 Super G winner Ilka Stuhec didn’t have what it takes to challenge the leader Federica Brignone but still managed to finish on the podium in third place with a 2.14-second delay.
The first challenger for first place was Swiss skier Corinne Suter. Even though he took many risks and set green intermediates throughout her run, she crossed the finish line with 50 hundredths of a second delay. The time still allowed her to secure the second spot on the podium.
Lara Gut-Behrami, Crans Montana 2020 Super G winner, who is suffering from a back injury, seemed to have an incredible physical shape. A 1.02-second advantage against Brignone granted her the lead of the competition. She was undoubtedly the favorite to win the race.
Third in the Overall standings, Marta Bassino challenged her teammate Brignone for a podium position but missed out on it only by 28 hundredths against Priska Nufer.
Teammate Francesca Marsaglia dethroned the Swiss and secured the third step of the podium. The Italian ski team is the strongest of all of this season, with three athletes placing in the Top-8.
Photo credits: La Stampa, Instagram & El Mundo Deportivo
Crans Montana Downhill back-to-back winner Sofia Goggia took many risks that seemed to pay off until the last jump did her dirty. Losing control over her body made Goggia miss the second-to-last gate of the slope. Her time would have secured her the second place position, but she was disqualified. Elena Curtoni’s fate aligned with Goggia’s, ending her run in the same way as her teammate: With a DNF.
The win also moved Gut-Behrami ahead of teammate Corinne Suter in the Super-G season standings, although there is still much racing left in the year.
Before the World Championships in Cortina kick-off at the start of February, the Women’s World Cup tour still has two stops. First up, a giant slalom at the Kronplatz, followed by a speed weekend in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
Hannes Zingerle, born and raised in Alta Badia, suffered from an incident in the end zone of the Alta Badia FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Giant Slalom race, missing out on a potential spot in the Top-30. During his interview with Ready Set Sport, he explained how the fall happened and how mistakes affect him mentally in preparation for the next races.
Exclusive interview with Daphne Seberich for Ready Set Sport
Answering the question regarding his mental state, Zingerle explained how being a professional implies psychological preparation and failures are to be expected and dealt with accordingly. “I mean, it is normal that some races are not going as you wished for, but you still have to fight through those moments”, says Zingerle. “With training, patience and a lot of hard work you get back on track.”
Ahead of the second run, Filip Zubcic answered some questions to Ready Set Sport. After winning the Giant Slalom race in Santa Caterina Valfurva on the 5th of December and placing third at the one on the 7th, he explained what his expectations at the Gran Risa were. He is undoubtedly one of the favorites to win the Giant Slalom Crystal Globe this season as well as a contender for the Overall championship.