KRANJSKA GORA, Slovenia – Marco Odermatt won a men’s World Cup giant slalom on Saturday to go top of the discipline standings with one race remaining.

The Swiss skier had a blistering final run as he improved from fourth position to win the race by more than a second.

Odermatt overtook his main rival in the GS standings, Alexis Pinturault, and built a lead of 25 points. A race win is worth 100 points.

The Frenchman finished Saturday’s race in fourth.

One more GS is scheduled – at the season-ending finals in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, next week.

“I really don’t know how I managed to do this today. I was tired,” Odermatt said. “My emotions are somewhere, I don’t know where. I am really happy about my skiing today.”

Alexis Pinturault (FRA).

Pinturault and Odermatt are ranked 1-2 in the overall standings, with the Frenchman’s lead now reduced to just 31 points.

However, Pinturault was expected to gain points again in Sunday’s slalom, an event which Odermatt will be sitting out.

Odermatt also has a shot at the super-G title next week in the Swiss skier’s breakout season on the World Cup.

A four-time gold medalist at the 2018 junior world championships, Odermatt won his first World Cup race last season, before adding three more wins in the current campaign.

In December, he ended a 10-year Swiss victory drought in men’s giant slaloms.

Loic Meillard and Marco Odermatt (SUI).

On Saturday, Odermatt led a Swiss 1-2 finish, 1.06 seconds ahead of Loïc Meillard, who was fastest in the opening run but posted only the 26th-fastest time in the final run.

It was Meillard’s seventh career podium, including one win from a parallel GS a year ago.

Stefan Brennsteiner of Austria was 1.09 behind in third, two weeks after he had the first top-three result of his career.

His teammate Marco Schwarz opted not to start. The combined world champion hurt his back in training this week and preferred to rest ahead of Sunday’s slalom, the Austria’s strongest discipline.

World Cup – Men’s Giant Slalom – Kranjska Gora – March 13, 2021

1 COMMENT

  1. Obermatts GS skiing is pretty awesome these days, and his clean edging and line really standout. Although, all the WC GS skiers have incredible dynamic control and power on those race skis. Its possible to learn a lot by watching these WC racers. One area were the WC GS racers are way ahead of PSIA is in rotational control. With the adoption of the wide rockered skis in the States, rational control is sort of a lost skill in recreational skiing, here. Just edge and pressure a rockered ski and it rotates readily into its turn apex. People might think its oxymoronic to compare PSIA and WC skiing, but USST did hire Mike Rogan to teach PSIA fundamentals. The USST expands the central PSIA fundamental skill of balance into the USST concepts of balance in the athletic stance and the parallel stance phases. Of course, WC skiing is just so much more dynamic than PSIA skiing. IMO, its the pole swing that is central to the WC dynamic difference. Pole swing is the nexus of the other three fundamental control skills, rotation, edging and pressure. And, watching the WC its easy to discern the effects of the SL and GS pole swings

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