Originally Posted by epic
How many of you guys have actually strapped on some shinguards ad raced SL in the past 5 years (let's just go with 5 years to reflect modern equipment and course sets)?
I don't race a lot of slalom, but I sure as heck don't feel like ANY of my turns in SL are arc to arc. If I was skiing arc to arc I don't think I'd be so sweaty when I get to the bottom of the course.
...absolutely. Thursday through Sunday, November through April, I'm either training (Eldora, Loveland, or A Basin, Colorado) or racing in Rocky Mountain Masters. My best events are Super G and downhill, but I train and race all 4. Thursday and Friday mornings, we usually share courses and coaches with the Colorado University (Boulder) Varsity or Development teams for tech event training. Do they redirect? You damn skippy they do, and so do we.
So consider the following:
Q: Why redirect in a race course?
A: Well, two reasons:
, the course sets, especially in the tech events, are getting more offset all the time. If you have any doubts, take a look at the video from the 2006 Beaver Creek Men's SL. You won't even
make all the gates in that course, and most other contemporary sets, if you don't redirect, to some extent.
, it isn't necessarily true that racers are trying to seek as little redirection as possible. Racers have a very simple goal: make it from start wand to finish beam in as few seconds as possible. Sometimes trying to ski arc to arc means you ski too round
, which means you cover too much real estate and don't spend enough time in the fall line, which is where the speed is.
Bode figured out a couple of years ago that doing a stivot was a cool way to cut off the line on the steep when it's really offset. Racers don't try for abstract concepts like "as little redirection as possible"...they use whatever is in their considerable bag of tricks to get to the finish line as fast as possible
Q: But it's just the hackers on the World Cup, and elsewhere, who use Major Redirection...right? All the Big Dogs on the porch do the arc to arc thing all the time, right?
A: Not even
close. Take a look at Katherine Zettel, Anja Paerson, Bode, Bennie, or Svindal, and you'll see some World Class redirection.
Q: Yeah, and so what
? Racers are a bunch of weirdos
, anyway. I have no desire to get to the bottom of the hill ASAP, I just want to ski like...well, you know, like every move I make is perfect
A: As somebody in Another Line of Endeavor noted, we're trying for excellence, not
perfection. You too, can learn from, and benefit excessively from, the carve-pivot-carve technique. Which, for example, might be a great thing
to use the next time you're on something like Starr, at Stowe, after April showers followed by a minus 30 cold snap. Or any time you're on something with the same degree of difficulty as the launch ramp for Evel Knievel's Last Jump...because staying in the fall line, as a number of people
have pointed out, is, overall, a lot easier than skiing across the fall line, where you're fighting not only your momentum, but gravity, too.
Any further questions?