It didn’t take long for Austria’s Marcel Hirscher to bounce back from a disappointing (by his standards, anyways) third-place finish in last weekend’s Val d’Isere giant slalom as the living legend put on a GS masterclass in Alta Badia, Italy, on Sunday, taking the race by a whopping 1.70 seconds.

Although Sunday’s weather was ideal for a ski race with partly cloudy skies and brisk winter air filling the Val Badia, due to the Gran Risa’s North-facing slope and thick tree cover, the entire track was cast in dark shadow for both the first and second run. Hirscher didn’t miss a beat, winning both runs and firmly placing himself at the top of the GS world.

“Ski racing is not very often fun during the race, it’s a hard fight,” admitted Hirscher. “It is hard work but crossing the finish line and seeing that the lights are green, this is fun. Skiing on the limit is always for every athlete a big challenge. Training yesterday was not so good and I wasn’t expecting that I can find the perfect setup, especially in the second run. All in all, I think this was they key to the success for today’s victory.”

Second place went to Hirscher’s Norwegian Rival Henrik Kristoffersen with Zan Kranjec bettering his fourth-place finish a year ago for the Slovenian’s first carer World Cup podium in third. The duo finished 1.70 and 1.82 seconds off of Hirscher’s blistering pace, respectively.

Kranjec’s podium was also the first Slovenian men’s GS podium since Uros Pavlovcic finished third in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, in 2001. Pavlocic now coaches for the Buck Hill Ski Racing Team in the United States.

“After one day I said to myself how I’m going to make a step forward and I’m very happy I made the podium today,” Kranjec said after the race. “Slovenia went a long time to have a podium in GS so I’m really happy that I made that happen again and I will try to keep it happening.”

American Ted Ligety continues to head in the right direction, snagging his first top-five finish of the season in fifth place. According to U.S men’s head coach Sasha Rearick, Sunday was an important stepping stone as Ligety continues his return from injury with the number-one goal of returning to the top seven ranked starters by the Olympics in February.

“I was really stoked with how he was able to adapt to the snow and the course set,” Rearick said after the race. “It was a good challenge, good adaptation, and we see the race horse starting to come out. The very bottom of the course both runs kind of cost him, that’s the difference.”

Ted Ligety nabbed his first top five of the season. Image Credit: Wolfgang Grebien/GEPA

Always looking to improve, Ligety noted just how powerful and clean on his edges Hirscher was, especially in a much rougher second run that saw many racers slip in the rankings.

“It was better, nice to be in the top five,” said Ligety. “I definitely want to be a few steps faster than that. Marcel definitely skied very impressive that second run so I’ll have to watch that a little bit. It looked like he was just clean through the snow while a lot of guys were bouncing around. It’s aggressive snow and on this kind of hill you need to hit with hard pressure and that often times means you get bounced a little off your skis and his skis are running smooth and clean, it was impressive.”

Tommy Ford was sitting in 23rd place after the first run and was looking strong before getting bounced out of the course midway down his second run. The rest of the American contingent of David Chodounsky, Tim Jitloff, Hig Roberts, and Ryan Cochran-Siegle did not qualify for a second run.

The men will race a parallel GS under the lights on Monday in Alta Badia.

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Top 10

  1. Marcel Hirscher (AUT) – Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
  2. Henrik Kristoffersen (NOR) – Rossignol/Rossignol/Look
  3. Zan Kranjec (SLO) – Rossignol/Rossignol/Look
  4. Justin Murisier (SUI) – Voelkl/Dalbello/Marker
  5. Ted Ligety (USA) – Head/Head/Head
  6. Matts Olsson (SWE) – Head/Head/Head
  7. Manuel Feller (AUT) – Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
  8. Luca De Aliprandini (ITA) – Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
  9. Alexis Pinturault (FRA) – Head/Head/Head
  10. Leif Kristian Nestvold-Haugen (NOR) – Rossignol/Rossignol/Look

Official Results

Rank Bib FIS Code Name Year Nation Run 1 Run 2 Total Time Diff. FIS Points WC Points
 1  4  53831 HIRSCHER Marcel 1989 AUT  1:12.15  1:13.27  2:25.42  0.00  100.00
 2  3  422304 KRISTOFFERSEN Henrik 1994 NOR  1:12.32  1:14.80  2:27.12  +1.70  11.46  80.00
 3  15  561244 KRANJEC Zan 1992 SLO  1:12.48  1:14.76  2:27.24  +1.82  12.27  60.00
 4  10  511896 MURISIER Justin 1992 SUI  1:12.64  1:14.85  2:27.49  +2.07  13.95  50.00
 5  14  534562 LIGETY Ted 1984 USA  1:12.90  1:14.75  2:27.65  +2.23  15.03  45.00
 6  7  501324 OLSSON Matts 1988 SWE  1:12.73  1:14.96  2:27.69  +2.27  15.30  40.00
 7  8  54063 FELLER Manuel 1992 AUT  1:12.52  1:15.23  2:27.75  +2.33  15.70  36.00
 8  11  990116 DE ALIPRANDINI Luca 1990 ITA  1:13.30  1:14.62  2:27.92  +2.50  16.85  32.00
 9  6  194364 PINTURAULT Alexis 1991 FRA  1:13.33  1:14.89  2:28.22  +2.80  18.87  29.00
 10  5  421669 NESTVOLD-HAUGEN Leif Kristian 1987 NOR  1:12.93  1:15.34  2:28.27  +2.85  19.21  26.00
 11  2  194495 FAIVRE Mathieu 1992 FRA  1:13.97  1:14.35  2:28.32  +2.90  19.54  24.00
 12  18  54031 LEITINGER Roland 1991 AUT  1:13.51  1:14.85  2:28.36  +2.94  19.81  22.00
 13  47  54027 BRENNSTEINER Stefan 1991 AUT  1:13.72  1:14.84  2:28.56  +3.14  21.16  20.00
 14  12  191750 FANARA Thomas 1981 FRA  1:13.17  1:15.40  2:28.57  +3.15  21.23  18.00
 15  55  481103 ANDRIENKO Aleksander 1990 RUS  1:14.47  1:14.16  2:28.63  +3.21  21.63  16.00
 16  27  294890 NANI Roberto 1988 ITA  1:13.99  1:14.86  2:28.85  +3.43  23.12  15.00
 16  9  292967 EISATH Florian 1984 ITA  1:14.13  1:14.72  2:28.85  +3.43  23.12  15.00
 18  22  512182 MEILLARD Loic 1996 SUI  1:14.11  1:14.77  2:28.88  +3.46  23.32  13.00
 19  16  292491 MOELGG Manfred 1982 ITA  1:13.70  1:15.43  2:29.13  +3.71  25.00  12.00
 20  23  511852 CAVIEZEL Gino 1992 SUI  1:14.42  1:14.80  2:29.22  +3.80  25.61  11.00
 21  72  511983 AERNI Luca 1993 SUI  1:14.82  1:14.58  2:29.40  +3.98  26.82  10.00
 22  19  501017 MYHRER Andre 1983 SWE  1:13.99  1:15.53  2:29.52  +4.10  27.63  9.00
 23  13  193967 MUFFAT-JEANDET Victor 1989 FRA  1:13.67  1:15.97  2:29.64  +4.22  28.44  8.00
 24  48  194935 FAVROT Thibaut 1994 FRA  1:14.89  1:15.10  2:29.99  +4.57  30.80  7.00
 25  20  380335 ZUBCIC Filip 1993 CRO  1:14.48  1:15.88  2:30.36  +4.94  33.29  6.00
 26  29  202597 SCHMID Alexander 1994 GER  1:14.77  1:15.60  2:30.37  +4.95  33.36  5.00
 27  26  103729 READ Erik 1991 CAN  1:13.90  1:19.89  2:33.79  +8.37  56.41  4.00
 28  24  291318 TONETTI Riccardo 1989 ITA  1:13.52  1:24.52  2:38.04  +12.62  85.05  0.00
Did not finish 2nd run
 58  54093 STROLZ Johannes 1992 AUT  1:14.78
 21  531799 FORD Tommy 1989 USA  1:14.21
Did not qualify for 2nd run
 76  230659 VALCAREGGI Massimiliano 1995 GRE  1:22.86
 74  302982 OHKOSHI Ryunosuke 1988 JPN  1:17.72
 73  380363 KOLEGA Elias 1996 CRO  1:17.84
 69  221213 RAPOSO Charlie 1996 GBR  1:16.59
 62  194457 GALEOTTI Greg 1992 FRA  1:16.45
 60  561322 HADALIN Stefan 1995 SLO  1:16.59
 57  6291430 MAURBERGER Simon 1995 ITA  1:15.04
 53  512039 ROULIN Gilles 1994 SUI  1:15.62
 52  512269 ODERMATT Marco 1997 SUI  1:14.91
 50  422073 NETELAND Bjoernar 1991 NOR  1:15.21
 49  410365 BARWOOD Adam 1992 NZL  1:17.17
 45  6530319 COCHRAN-SIEGLE Ryan 1992 USA  1:15.00
 44  103676 BROWN Phil 1991 CAN  1:16.63
 43  934566 ROBERTS Hig 1991 USA  1:15.10
 42  700879 ZAMPA Andreas 1993 SVK  1:15.72
 41  422390 MONSEN Marcus 1995 NOR  1:15.30
 39  54104 WALCH Magnus 1992 AUT  1:15.70
 38  990048 BORSOTTI Giovanni 1990 ITA  1:15.51
 37  422278 WINDINGSTAD Rasmus 1993 NOR  1:15.22
 36  700830 ZAMPA Adam 1990 SVK  1:15.94
 35  180666 TORSTI Samu 1991 FIN  1:16.09
 33  481327 TRIKHICHEV Pavel 1992 RUS  1:15.20
 32  534959 JITLOFF Tim 1985 USA  1:15.10
 30  534508 CHODOUNSKY David 1984 USA  1:15.23
 28  511741 ZURBRIGGEN Elia 1990 SUI  1:14.91
 25  202462 DOPFER Fritz 1987 GER  1:17.18
 17  422139 KILDE Aleksander Aamodt 1992 NOR  1:15.17
Did not finish 1st run
 75  54106 BREITFUSS KAMMERLANDER Simon 1992 BOL
 70  54170 MATT Michael 1993 AUT
 68  6190329 GUILLOT Victor 1996 FRA
 67  20398 VERDU Joan 1995 AND
 66  511638 TUMLER Thomas 1989 SUI
 65  561310 HROBAT Miha 1995 SLO
 64  516287 BUGNARD Pierre 1993 SUI
 63  54320 SCHWARZ Marco 1995 AUT
 61  150644 KRYZL Krystof 1986 CZE
 59  511857 JENAL Sandro 1992 SUI
 56  511899 ROCHAT Marc 1992 SUI
 54  6290440 ZINGERLE Alex 1992 ITA
 51  502015 JAKOBSEN Kristoffer 1994 SWE
 46  53889 HIRSCHBUEHL Christian 1990 AUT
 40  410364 FEASEY Willis 1992 NZL
 34  103865 PHILP Trevor 1992 CAN
 31  421483 JANSRUD Kjetil 1985 NOR
 1  202437 LUITZ Stefan 1992 GER
Did not start 1st run
 71  400237 MEINERS Maarten 1992 NED
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Sean Higgins
Senior Editor
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A Lake Tahoe native and University of Vermont graduate, Higgins was a member of the Catamounts' 2012 NCAA title winning squad and earned first team All-American status in 2013. Prior to coming to Ski Racing Media, he coached U14s for the Squaw Valley Ski Team.
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