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Who did it...

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
So much is being made about winning races, standings and titles....

Trivia question for those of you who think these things are important...

"What skier won the WC Overall title one season, without winning a single race?"

Put on your thinking caps......
post #2 of 17
Hmm. I'm not quite finding it. Close:
Gustavo Thoeni won just one race in 1972
Anita Wachter, the same, in 1992
Pirmin Zurbriggen won only two in 1988
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
SJJ- good guesses! but not quite...
And what a trio you named! All exemplary athletes and racers!


Where are all you racing gurus... someone should have put up the answer by now!
post #4 of 17
Ah, I knew that.

oh wait, the answer ain't posted yet ...

sounds like a woman who took a bunch of 2'nds ...
post #5 of 17
Peter Leuscher Switzerland
post #6 of 17
Originally Posted by mel> View Post
Peter Leuscher Switzerland
What brand of boots did he wear?
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 

Ding Ding Ding...and we have a winner!

On his very first post at EpicSki, mel> sticks the answer!

For those of you who might remember, he skied DH in a helmet which had a large fried egg on it! (Sunny side up, of course!)

Peter Leuscher did not win a single race that season, but did win the Men's Overall WC title. By placing consistently in the top 5, he just kept racking up the points in all four events, SL, GS, DH and Combined (this was pre-SG).

I can't say whether PL would have gladly given up the Overall title, in exchange for a few victories, but I bet he would certainly have enjoyed standing on the top step a few times...

So now, looking at Bode, is winning every race so critical to winning the overall title? It certainly helps to win a few, but being consistent counts for an awful lot too!

What ever Bode manages to achieve this season is up to him. He takes the risks, and he should garner the rewards. Sure, he needs his coaches, ski techs, and other support personnel. But when it comes down to it, he stands in the start gate alone. If he is successful, everybody basks in the glow. But if he is not, he stands alone. I don't see his coaches, tuners, et al, standing with him, sharing his disappointment!

If he wins 14 races this season, but fails to win the Overall, will it mean he had a failure of a season? In Europe, to win a single race in a career makes you a "made man/woman", and your reputation is assured! Here in the US (where ironically we tend to cheer on the independent underdog), it will be just another chance for the media to say how much of an under achiever Bode is.

So let him do it his way. Only time will tell if his decisions are right or wrong, and only he will have to live with those results.

I say- "Git 'er done, Bode!".

And screw the media, the naysayers, and the USST heirarchy!
post #8 of 17
Interesting trivia question!

Similar discussions come up in the cycling world: Since it is possible to win a Grand Tour without winning a stage, is the GC (overall) winner of a Grand Tour still a champion if he never wins a stage?

The general consensus in the cycling world is, "No! The GC winner must stamp his authority on the race and win stages when he can. He must show his fellow competitors who is the champion, not just the fans and timekeepers."

So, since Bode is a competitive sort, he will probably try to win as many races as he can. He's off to a good start this year, and has certainly stamped his authority on the circuit (for this month anyway). And it is good for him, for the USST, and for the WC to have him try to win every time.

Besides, in ski racing, how can you really race for top 5? You either try to win every time, or hope your bad day was good enough for the points cut.
post #9 of 17

Garmisch-Partenkirchen Slalom 1/28/79: Luscher 1st
Garmisch-Partenkirchen Combined 1/28/79: Luscher 1st
Schladming Combined 12/10/78: Luscher 1st
post #10 of 17
Plus, the only reason he won the overall is because "discipline specialists" (read: Steinmark) were only allowed to have something ridiculous like 75 or 80 points count in each discipline. Steinmark was 1 in slalom and gs that year and had something ridiculous like 150 points credited to his name (while he should have had 200+ if I remember right). Largely enough to win the overall.

But that's the FIS for you.
post #11 of 17
Billy Ray:

The overall World Cup was intended to be earned by the skier who was the best overall skier. In Stenmark's days, the advantage for the technical skiers was very big due to the absence of Super G. That is why they limited the number of points scored in each discipline when counted for the overall. This was the case for all the events, including downhill. As it still does today, the combined favored the slalom specialists. Even more then, as the finish of the combined also was determined by race points, and it was easier for a slalom speicalist to score lower race in downhill than it was for a downhilller to score race points in slalom. So FIS tried to reward the skier who would ski all events. In some views maybe not "fair", but many agreed with FIS.

As far as the original question, I believe the fewest individual wins by an overall winner was Gustavo Thoeni in 1971-72 with one win.
post #12 of 17
I know the supposed purpose behind the rules, I just find that it was a bit, how can I say it, "convenient" to implement it when someone from a lowet-tier racing nation was poised to win his fourth overall title in a row...

And I don't think that this rule stands anymore : "OVERALL CLASSIFICATION: 12. 4 The individual overall standings will be counted for men and ladies on the basis of all results (WC points) a competitor has achieved in each of the four disciplines and the results in the combined races." FIS rules 2006-2007 p. 18.
post #13 of 17
It really was not to get at Ingemar that the FIS changed the rules in 1979, but it was the to even out the advantage of the technical skiers vs. the speed specialists. You really had to go back 8 years from 1979 to get to Karl Schranz as an overall winner who really excelled in all three events. With the addition of SG in the mid, late 80's it evened out a little bit so that the speed and technical skiers each would have two events to even the odds. Not an easy thing for FIS to try to find the right formula that truly gave them the best overall skier as the overall WC champion.
post #14 of 17
The interesting thing (or one of them) about the whole scoring system kafuffle in relation to Luscher is that, just as Stenmark had done earlier, he managed to win the overall title in '79 with zero points in downhill. He beat Stenmark by virtue of a big pile of points from Combined races: he got more, actually from that "event" than either Slalom or GS.

The '79 system -- only best three results in each event count -- was actually a throwback to the original scoring system used when the World Cup started out. The significant difference (particularly in how it affected the outcome) was that Combined results were included, rather than just SL, GS and DH.

There had been several Rube Goldberg-esque systems along the way (e.g. dividing the season into two periods and limiting the number of results from each). So far as I can recall, these tended to illustrate the law of unintended consequences.

The current system -- just add up all your points -- has the great virtue of simplicity. Adding the SG may have been the main trick that made it possible to reward all-round performance with a simple scoring system. While there have been some specialist champions along the way (e.g. Tomba on one side, Luc Alphand on the other), the winners have generally been at least three-event skiers (Eberharter being, perhaps, a 2-1/2 event skier in 2003). Other factors, maybe, at various points: counting combined results (from 1980); break-away gates creating more of a difference between GS and SL skills; equipment changes in the last five+ years and the resulting changes in technique and course-setting.
post #15 of 17
Another argument that I remember from the time of the introduction of Super G (1983), was that giant slalom had "moved away from the original idea, which was to be a precise halfway point between slalom and downhill, and become too similar to slalom". Not having skied giant slalom in the 1950s and 1960s, I don't know if this was the case. Some of the GS courses were certainly long in those days, though:
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
WoW! Martin, what a list of names!!!!

Almost all on that list went on to compete on the WPS, under Bob Beattie, during the next few years!

And then of course there was the controversy which Schranz was embroiled in, regarding amatuer vs. pro status....

What an era.... Russel, Orcel, and Penz....

Who could believe it? 7 seconds out and still in the top ten.... now a days, if you aren't within about 2 seconds you aren't in the top fifteen!
post #17 of 17
Originally Posted by vail snopro View Post
WoW! Martin, what a list of names!!!!
Almost all on that list went on to compete on the WPS, under Bob Beattie, during the next few years!!
My Masters coach was a walk on to WPS Lange Cup Sun Valley early 70s making it all the way to the semis before Werner Bleiner knocked him out. Clicking Bleiner, 2nd off Martin's link seeing his stellar Worldcup career I notice how many Worldcups were in North America back then: Crystal Mt WA, Grouse Mt BC, Heavenly CA, Mt St. Anne QB, Jackson Hole WY, Franconia NH.

Question: was it Beattie's Pro Tour that resulted in the much fewer Worldcups on this side of the Atlantic we see today?

- Fossil
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