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post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I usually record races and watch on Sunday night when I get home from the mountains. One of my kids is down with the flu, so it looks like I may not get up on the hill this wknd. Which means I'll be watching the Val d'Isere downhill live (I'll update any of you night owls/early birds stateside with results). Bode won the last training run, but over 30 racers skipped it, Cuche, for example, to train slalom for the Super Combi Sunday! Sounds like the course is more of a very fast Super G than a true DH; the downhillers appear to be pissed off. Wonder if we'll see a good result from Raich tomorrow. Lets hope not Watch out for Italy's Innerhofer.
post #2 of 11
Sounds like the boys are frustrated with muscling their 215's (required) down this cranky b****. Interesting test.

Wasn't it Patrick Ortlieb who won here in the '92 Olympics? Was that the last time they were on this Russi designed course?
post #3 of 11
Sounds like this version of the course is much different. 10 seconds slower than '92 even with modern equipment and technique, and they complained about it being too slow and turny back then. However, with all the dnf's and dq's in training, it should be an interesting race to watch, kind of like slalom where the racers have to make calculated risks in line or blow out.
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Yeah, I've lost the thread on this. They haven't used this course since 92, right? So what course have they been using these last few years at Val d'Isere (when the race has been held)? And why the change now?
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Race Canceled
post #6 of 11
It's true, they haven't used the Face du Bellevarde course since the '92 games. The usual venue for DH at Val d'Isere is the OK course, which is a lot less technical in comparison.

And it's funny that the racers are bitching about the Face course, given that their DH skis are a lot more turn-happy than the skis of 1992. And back then, the winning time on the same course was 13 seconds faster than the fastest full-run training time this year. Heh.

The reason they were running the Russi-designed course is that it's the official DH course for the 2009 World Alpine Ski Championships, and tradition mandates that there be a test event for the course in the year prior to the official event (e.g. Snowbasin hosting World Cup and Nor-Am events in 2001 to test the 2002 Olympic course - and the Nor-Am event saw most of the World Cup women in attendance to preview the Wildflower course).
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Bitching aside, I thought it looked like a pretty cool ride. Italian TV was speculating on who would have been a possible winner of a full DH on this course, naming Miller, Svindal, Meier and Cuche, and noting that it would also have been a good course for the retired Norwegians Kjus and Aamodt. With that kind of pedigree (if their analysis is correct), kind of hard to argue with the quality of the course. But back in 92 a glider won, so something must be different today.
post #8 of 11
I saw a couple clips of the Super Combined. It looked ok. Definitely a challenge. But it was basically a super G, not a downhill, with cranker after cranker. In fact, with an average speed of somewhere in the 80kmh range, I'm sure there are faster, straighter super g courses on the tour. Why they would bring back a course that was controversial and even loathed 16 years ago, and add even MORE turns is silly. I read somewhere that the main reason they came up with that course in the first place is because the hill is so steep and exposed that spectators can see the majority of it from the finish line. I thought that's what tv cameras were for.
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
On TV I thought it looked pretty cool. Some of the faster, more open courses are really boring to watch on television, IMV.
post #10 of 11
I was in Val d'Isere last week and got to watch some of the training runs (was going to watch saturday's race before it got cancelled - had to leave on Sunday morning ). I did find the course entertaining, but for my first up close experience of WC DH it did seem slower than I expected. I did however get to see a few of the guy's practicing slalom during the week which was absolutely awesome - saw Grange; Ligety and another American who I didn't recognise (on Nordicas), but the guys who seemed to be on the slalom practise most were the Croats, so I guess it payed off!
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
I have never seen a Cup race, to my great shame, and I've certainly had chances. Problem is, it's always a choice between watching and skiing. I have seen training a number of times; our hill was the US team's favorite for this purpose for a couple seasons. Had the pleasure of watching/chatting with Tom Rothrock and Chip Knight, nice guys. We've had Europa Cup races at our hill, even the SL and GS finals, but for some reason it's always during the week. Maybe this year I'll take a day off and go up to watch. I've always thought SL would be best to watch live.
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