KITZBUEHEL 2005: Canadians to focus on super G{mosimage}With the legendary Hahnennkamm races just a few days away, the Canadian alpine ski team has decided to stay out of the downhill race and instead focus on Friday’s super G. As older members of the Canadian team have suffered injuries this year (Jan Hudec and Julien Cousineau, to name two), some rookies have stepped up for surprising World Cup results.

The team is composed of the circuit’s younger racers, namely Erik Guay, John Kucera, Manuel Osborne-Paradis, Jeff Hume, François Bourque, David Anderson, and Brad Spence, arrived to Kitzbuehel with the ambition of partaking in the downhill training run to prepare for the super G race.

However, once the team’s coaches saw the racetrack, reflected upon their season’s strategy, and considered the poor weather that is being forecasted for the rest of the week, a decision was made to have the athletes inspect the course and train super G on another slope instead of racing in the first training run. The coaches deemed that training super G would be more valuable for the athletes than taking a single downhill run.

‘Our strategy for Kitzbuehel was to have the guys focus on preparing for the super G’ said Alpine Canada Alpin’s Chief Athletic Officer, Max Gartner. ‘We have a young team, with lots of potential. The majority of them have never even raced on this track and this is why we wanted them to first aim for strong results in super G. We also have to keep in mind that we are looking for our athletes to peak at the World Championships in just over a week’ he added.

‘Our guys got some excellent training today and both coaches and athletes are satisfied with the decision that was made’ he concluded.

The 7 Canadian athletes in Kitzbuehel are set to stick to their plan for the upcoming days, thus training Super G all the way up to the January 21 super G race, and missing the scheduled downhill.

The Hahnenkamm downhill race attracts 70,000 spectators coming from neighboring villages and countries. Starting with the infamous Mausefalle (Mousetrap) – a dizzying slope with an
85 percent gradient – competitors soon reach speeds of up to 130 km/h while having to negotiate jumps that can propel them more than 70 metres through the air.

First staged in 1931, the Hahnenkamm downhill is considered one of the top prizes in world skiing with past winners including Jean-Claude Killy, Franz Klammer, Pirmin Zurbriggen and Maier.

Article Tags: Alpine



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