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World Cup training runs

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

How significant is a  fast time in the training run for predicting who will do well in a race? It seems to me that the winner of the training run often does not do much in the actual competition.  Am I only remembering the times that stand out because the training run winner's time seems to drop like a rock on race day? Lindsey Vonn seems to dominate both training runs and races, but she's in a class by herself.  On the Men's World Cup I don't see any consistent pattern.  I know that often a racer does well in the important middle sections during training but stands up at the end and even starts slowly, so I study the middle section times, but even there I'm often taken back.  Skiers who I thought had fast times for the middle sections on the last Bird's of Prey not only didn't win, but weren't in the top five. 


Are training run times just something the media makes a big thing about, but which really don't say anything about who will be fast on race day?  Werner Heel said as much today.  What do you watch for if anything?

post #2 of 3

Sandbagging is quite prevalent in DH training runs.  Someone like Bode often plans to ski a line in the race that no one else would even consider.  I believe the training run results are also used to some degree in determining start order.


With that said, I think fast training runs can build a racers confidence, sometimes to his detriment.  We will see how Hans Olson does this weekend.


post #3 of 3

Some teams  (nations) use the training runs to make final selection of starters on race day, so the guys/gals on the bubble are giving it all.

Other athletes use training to test equipment, or try different lines  through sections. Others try to run the line they think will work on raceday and high-tuck or stand for the last split to skew the time.


It used to be the way to create the start order, where the fastest started 30th and the 30th fastest started first. There it was common to try to slow before the finish to get the coveted 7-10 bib.

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