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  • Writer's pictureRaúl Revuelta

Federica Brignone Wins Giant Slalom in Åre

Updated: Mar 18

Federica Brignone. Åre Giant Slalom Podium 2024
Åre Giant Slalom Podium 2024. Picture: GEPA Pictures / HEAD Ski

Federica Brignone wins a thrilling Giant Slalom in Åre. After finishing in third place in the first run she mastered the second run setting the best time to win her fifth race of the season, the third one in Giant Slalom.

The 33-year-old Italian skier, the oldest winner of a women's World Cup Giant Slalom race, finished with a lead of 0.33 seconds over Sara Hector. Lara Gut-Behrami rounded out the podium 0.40 seconds behind Brignone.

The decision about the Crystal Globe in the Giant Slalom World Cup must wait for the Finals in Saalbach-Hinterglemm.

Brignone became the first female skier representing Italy to achieve 26 World Cup victories. The only Italian to have won more than 26 World Cup events is ski legend Alberto Tomba (50).

"After the first run, I was not happy with my run. I started really bad and I had no confidence. And in the second run I said to myself, 'OK, you have to try everything because you're far back. I didn't think it was possible today to win the race. I just tried my best to be on the podium again, it was the objective today, I just wanted to attack from the start. Then I made a mistake and knew I just had to push more. I found the right rhythm and I'm surprised that it was enough to win in the end. Nevertheless, the Crystal Globe fight is over. There's no way I can catch Lara anymore. Now I'm going to do the slalom tomorrow. I want to have fun," Brignone said.

Sara Hector finished on the podium for the fifth time this season. The 31-year-old Swede was hoping to achieve her first home win, especially after leading the first run.

"I'm a bit annoyed that I didn't win. In the morning I would have been happy about second place, but after the first run with this lead, I would have been better off winning. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a good second run," Hector said.

Lara Gut-Behrami with her third position made another step forward in her fight for the Overall and Giant Slalom Crystal Globes. The skier from Ticino has finished on the podium in seven of the ten Giant Slalom events this season including four victories.

Lara Gut-Behrami (745 points) leads Federica Brignone (650) by 95 points in the Giant Slalom standings. In the Overall standings, Gut-Behrami (1654) has a 286-point lead over the Italian (1368) and 445-point over Mikaela Shiffrin.

I didn't have a good feeling in both runs, the skis didn't grip well. The snow was a little bit weird to ski. I had a little trouble finding the right timing. I always started a little too early and couldn't accelerate properly. Of course, it's a podium place, but in terms of skiing, it wasn't what I imagined. At the moment I'm just annoyed by the way I skied. Because that is the most important thing for me. Towards the end of the season, you're tired and you don't have the clear head to analyze everything five minutes after the race. I always said the Crystal Globes would be claimed in Saalbach. It stays that way. I only have skiing on my mind, that's all I think about," Gut-Behrami said.


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