It’s the final countdown: Just three days until the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup begins in Sölden (AUT). With last Thursday’s positive snow control, FIS Assistant Race Director Markus Mayr and Sölden’s Chief of Course, Isidor Grüner, gave the green light for the first ski races of the season.
The greatest alpine ski racers in the world are getting ready to return to the Rettenbach glacier for a weekend of thrills and high-level racing. Thanks to an altitude of 3,000 metres, the glacier usually grants good early season snow conditions.
"The slope preparation took us very long this year. Luckily, we have had good temperatures for snowmaking and at the moment we have great conditions for training. Now we will work with water to create ideal and fair racing conditions for Saturday and Sunday." Grüner said.
The 2019/20 Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Season is set to get underway on Saturday 26th October with the women’s giant slalom, followed by the men’s race on Sunday. The traditional season opening in Sölden both men and women racing at the same venue on the same weekend, and also hosts a flurry of press conferences, industry meetings and the FIS Forum Alpinum, the annual meeting of Alpine ski journalists, the start of season media briefing.
The racing action promises to be very interesting with many nations vying for honours. Mikaela Shiffrin (USA) is eager to defend her Overall title against giant slalom veterans such as Tessa Worley (FRA), Viktoria Rebensburg (GER) and Federica Brignone (ITA). On the men’s side, it looks even more exciting with many competitive athletes including Henrik Kristoffersen (NOR) and Alexis Pinturault (FRA) willing ready to fill that empty spot left by Marcel Hirscher after his retirement.
Michael Bradley Photography