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  • Writer's pictureRaúl Revuelta

Schladming Night Slalom Preview

Updated: Jan 23

Schladming Night Slalom
Schladming Night Slalom. Picture: OK Weltcup Alpin Schladming / Martin Huber

Every year on the Tuesday after Kitzbühel, Schladming stages the traditional Night Slalom.

This season Schladming will also host a Giant Slalom.

January 23rd Giant Slalom / Men (Night Event) 1st run 17:45 / 2nd run 20:45 CET

January 24th Slalom / Men (Night Event) 1st run 17:45 / 2nd run 20:45 CET

Planai Racecourse facts:

  • Start Elevation: 958 m (Slalom) 1148 m (Giant Slalom)

  • Finish Elevation: 744 m (Slalom) 758 (Giant Slalom)

  • Vertical Drop: 214 m (Slalom) 390 (Giant Slalom)

  • Length: 582 m

  • Max. slope: 52 %

Schladming is a small former mining town in the northwest of the Austrian state of Styria.

The ski resort named Planai is the main mountain in the Schladming area. It is one of four adjoining mountains, which include Hauser Kaibling, Hochwurzen, and Reiteralm, connected under the name Schladminger 4-Berge-Schaukel a ski area of 123 km of beautifully prepared pistes.

The Schladming-Dachstein World Championship Region has held various skiing competitions, including most notably the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in 1982 and the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in 2013.

Schladming-Dachstein is part of the Ski Amadé ski domain, a network of 28 ski areas and towns that combined, make up the second-largest ski area in Europe. With only one lift pass you can ski on 760 kilometers of slopes served 270 modern lifts, spread out throughout the top five ski regions of Salzburger Sportwelt, Schladming-Dachstein (including the Dachstein Glacier at 2,700 m), Gastein, Hochkönig, and Grossarltal.

In 2020, the first year without Marcel Hirscher, was again the time for Henrik Kristoffersen who earned his fourth World Cup win in Schladming, over his contenders Alexis Pinturault (second +0.34) and Daniel Yule (third +0.83).

In 2021 in an exciting race in Schladming Austrian Marco Schwarz claimed his second career World Cup slalom victory. He finished ahead of the French duo of Clement Noel and Alexis Pinturault.

In 2022 in a thrilling race under the floodlights, German Linus Strasser won the Night Slalom in Schladming. He finished ahead of Atle Lie McGrath by a mere +0.03 seconds.

Manuel Feller finished +0.39 seconds behind Strasser. Feller who was 28th in the first run made up 25 positions overcoming a 1.95 seconds deficit and thus clinched his second podium of the season in Slalom after a dream second run.

Schladming Night Race 2022.
Schladming Night Race 2022. Picture: OK Weltcup Alpin Schladming / Martin Huber

Last season, in a thrilling race under the floodlights, in front of a 45,000 ski fans crowd, French Clement Noël won the Night Slalom in Schladming. He finished ahead of Ramon Zenhäusern by a mere +0.07 seconds. Lucas Braathen finished +0.38 seconds behind Noël.

Schladming Night Race 2023. Slalom. Clement Noël, Lucas Braathen, Ramon Zenhaeusern, Lucas Braathen
Schladming Night Race 2023. Picture: OK Weltcup Alpin Schladming / Martin Huber

In the Giant Slalom, despite the great absence of Marco Odermatt, the Swiss Party continued in Schladming with a 1-2 podium.

In a demanding racecourse, even more in the second run under the fog, Loic Meillard claimed his first World Cup victory of the season, his second one in the World Cup.

Gino Caviezel finished in second place 0.59 seconds behind his teammate.

Marco Schwarz rounded out the podium 0.81 seconds off the pace.

Loic Meillard
Loic Meillard. Picture: Erich Spiess / Red Bull Content Pool

Giant Slalom Preview

Marco Odermatt won the first World Cup Giant Slalom of the Season in Val d'Isère, the following two held in Alta Badia, and again in Adelboden. Odermatt is the second male skier to win each of the opening four World Cup Giant Slalom events of a season. Only Ingemar Stenmark (all 10 in 1978-1979) has had a longer winning streak from the beginning of a season in Men's World Cup Giant Slalom.

Marco Odermatt has won each of the last seven men's World Cup Giant Slalom events, since Marco Schwarz was victorious in Palisades Tahoe on February 25, 2023. This is the second-longest winning streak in Giant Slalom, after a run of 14 by Ingemar Stenmark from 1978 to 1980.

In the last two seasons, Marco Odermatt was the absolute dominator of the discipline. He is the reigning Olympic Champion, World Champion, and Crystal Globe winner in the Men's Giant Slalom.

Since December 7, 2020, in Santa Caterina Odermatt has won 18 Giant Slalom events in the World Cup. Among Swiss men, only von Michael von Grünigen (23) won more men's Giant Slalom World Cup events than Odermatt.

Odermatt (18) is tied with Alexis Pinturault (18) in fifth place on the all-time list of male World Cup Giant Slalom winners. Ingemar Stenmark (46), Marcel Hirscher (31), Ted Ligety (24) and Michael von Grünigen (23) are the top four.

Last season Marco Odermatt secured the Giant Slalom Crystal Globe in Kranjska Gora. Odermatt also picked up the Giant Slalom Crystal Globe in the 2021-2022 season becoming the first Swiss man to do so since Didier Cuche in 2008-2009. The last Swiss man to claim the Giant Slalom globe in successive seasons was Michael von Grünigen in 1995-1996, and 1996-1997.

Odermatt finished on the podium in each of his last 21 starts in World Cup Giant Slalom races (including 16 wins), since an 11th place in Lenzerheide on 20 March 2021. The only World Cup Giant slalom event he missed in that run was in Schladming last season due to a minor injury.

Filip Zubcic finished on the Cup podium in Giant Slalom this season two times, in Alta Badia (2nd), and Adelboden (3rd). It's his 12th career podium.

He finished in fourth position in the other two Giant Slalom races in Alta Badia and Val d'Isère.

Zubcic is in second place in the Giant Slalom standings.

All of Zubcic's Giant Slalom podiums before this season (three wins, five second places, one third place) came in a 14-month span between January 2020 and March 2021.

Žan Kranjec finished in third position in both Giant Slalom races held in Alta Badia. It's his 13th podium in the World Cup, all in the Giant Salom. The last man to record at least three third-place finishes in the

Giant Slalom in a single season was Henrik Kristoffersen (3) in 2015-2016.

He has won two World Cup races in the Giant Slalom, in Saalbach-Hinterglemm on December 19, 2018, and in Adelboden on January 11, 2020.

Kranjec finished in second place at the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing. Kranjec became the second man representing Slovenia to win an Olympic medal in alpine skiing, after Jure Kosir (bronze in the slalom in 1994). Kranjec recorded two World Cup victories, in the Giant Slalom in Saalbach Hinterglemm (2018) and Adelboden (2020).

Kranjec (2) hopes to equal Jure Kosir (3) on most World Cup victories among men representing Slovenia.

Joan Verdu from Andorra surprisingly finished in third position in Val d'Isère. The 28-year-old took his first World Cup podium and achieved the first-ever podium for Andorra.

With four victories in the European Cup Giant Slalom in Glungezer (twice), on the Reiteralm, and in Oppdal, he won the overall ranking in this discipline in 2021-2022 and became the first athlete from Andorra to secure a fixed starting place in all World Cup Giant Slalom events since the 2022-2023 season. Joan Verdú made his Alpine Ski World Cup debut in Sölden in 2016.

Henrik Kristoffersen finished in second place in the Men's Giant Slalom World Cup standings last season. Kristoffersen finished on the podium of a Giant Slalom event seven times in the 2022-2023 season, but never on the highest step (5 second places and 2 third places).

Kristoffersen has claimed at least one World Cup win in each of the last ten seasons. He can become the second male skier to claim at least one World Cup victory in as many as 11 consecutive seasons, after Alberto Tomba (1987-1988 to 1997-1998).

Kristoffersen's last Giant Slalom World Cup triumph was in Kranjska Gora in March 2022. He has finished in the top eight in 14 of his 15 starts in the discipline since that victory (including five second places and two third places), with a DNF in Courchevel in March 2022 as an exception.

Loïc Meillard won the Giant Slalom in Schladming last season, his only Giant Slalom World Cup victory of his career. His best result in the discipline since his victory last year is a sixth place in Val d'Isère on December 9, 2023.

Slalom Preview

Manuel Feller secured the fourth Austrian victory in the fourth Slalom race of the season in Wengen. It's his fifth World Cup victory and his third one of the season after winning in Gurgl and Adelboden. He finished fifth (Madonna di Campiglio) and fourth (Kitzbühel) in the other races. Feller's 4th position in the Hahnenkamm consolidates him as leader of the Slalom World Cup classification with 395 points.

The 31-year-old Austrian skier became the first man to win three World Cup Slalom races in a single season since Clément Noël and Daniel Yule both won three events in 2019-2020. Feller can become the first man to win four World Cup Slalom races in a single season since Marcel Hirscher won five in the 2018-2019 winter season.

His best result in the Night Slalom in Schladming was a third place in January 2022.

Linus Straßer won his third career World Cup Slalom in Kitzbühel last Sunday. It's his eighth podium in Slalom in the Alpine Ski World Cup and his first one this season. He is fourth-most among German skiers in Slalom wins behind Felix Neureuther (11), Bittner (7) and Christian Neureuther (6).

The last German skier to record back-to-back Slalom World Cup wins was Armin Bittner, in January 1990. His second of those victories came in Schladming.

Straßer won the Night Slalom World Cup event in Schladming in January 2022.

Kristoffer Jakobsen achieved last Sunday in Kitzbühel his third World Cup Slalom podium. He claimed his previous two podiums in Val d'Isère and Madonna di Campiglio on December 2021.

This season he failed to finish the first run of the three previous Slalom races. He finished in 11th position in the Slalom opener in Gurgl.

The last Swede to claim a slalom World Cup victory was André Myhrer, in Aspen in March 2017.

Daniel Yule finished in third position in the Ganslernhang in Kitzbühel. It's his first season podium and the first one in the discipline for the Swiss Team. The last time he finished on the Top-3 was on February 2, 2023 in Chamonix.

Atle Lie McGrath DNF in the last Slalom race in Kitzbühel.

He finished in second place behind Feller in two World Cup Slalom races, missing out on the victory by a small margin in Adelboden (+0.02 seconds) and Wengen (+0.10). The last skier to finish second in at least three Slalom

races was Clément Noël (3) in 2020-2021.

He was back on the podium again after recovering from a second ACL operation in February 2023. He claimed his two career World Cup slalom victories in March 2022 (back-to-back wins in Flachau and Courchevel).

Dave Ryding finished in third place in Madonna di Campiglio. It's his 7th podium in the Alpine Ski World Cup. Ryding became in Italy the second-oldest man to record a World Cup Slalom podium finish, after Giuliano Razzoli's third place in Wengen on January 16, 2022, at 37 years and 29 days.

He finished in fourth place in the Opening Slalom in Gurgl, missing the podium by merely 0.01 seconds. 37-year-old Ryding could become the second skier (male or female) to claim a World Cup victory after turning 37. Didier Cuche claimed four Alpine Ski World Cup wins after his 37th birthday in the 2011-2012 season.

He could become the oldest man to record a World Cup Slalom podium finish.

Henrik Kristoffersen finished in second place in the Slalom standings and won the Slalom gold medal at the 2023 Alpine World Ski Championships in Courchevel-Méribel. Previously the 29-year-old Norwegian had won a bronze medal in 2021 at Cortina d'Ampezzo and at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi.

Henrik Kristoffersen has won the Slalom Crystal Globe three times (2015-2016, 2019-2020, and 2021-2022). He aims to become the fourth male alpine skier to win the Slalom Title more than three times, after Ingemar Stenmark (8), Marcel Hirscher (6), and Alberto Tomba (4).

The Norwegian was four times on the podium last season, twice in the first position: Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Wengen.

Kristoffersen, with 51 podiums, including 23 wins in this discipline, is in fourth position in the ranking of most podiums in Slalom. Only three other men have won more podium finishes in World Cup Slalom events than Kristoffersen: Ingemar Stenmark (81), Marcel Hirscher (65), and Alberto Tomba (57).

Kristoffersen can become this season the second male skier to achieve at least one World Cup victory in 11 consecutive seasons after Alberto Tomba did so from 1987-1988 to 1997-1998.

Kristoffersen has won the Schladming Night Slalom four times (2014, 2016, 2017, and 2020), a joint record at the resort alongside Benjamin Raich.

Clement Noël finished in second place in the Night Slalom in Madonna di Campiglio. The Olympic Champion in Beijing celebrated his 21st World Cup podium in Slalom. The last time the 26-year-old French skier finished on the podium was in Palisades Tahoe on February 26, 2023.

Noël won the Night Slalom in Schladming last season. It's his only World Cup win since he became Olympic Slalom champion in February 2022. He also finished second in Schladming in 2021.

Ramon Zenhäusern finished in third place in the Slalom standings. He won the last race of the 2022-2023 winter season in Soldeu, Andorra. It's his third podium and second win of last season. After more than two years, he has won the Slalom event at the "Verte des Houches" piste in Chamonix. He won two Slalom World Cup events in a single season for the first time.

He missed his first Slalom race in 11 years last Sunday in Kitzbühel due to his sore back.

Two-time Junior World Champion Alexander Steen Olsen won a thrilling Slalom at Palisades Tahoe last season. But the 22-year-old Norwegian had to endure a long wait to celebrate his first career World Cup victory. Only after minutes of deliberation and the subsequent disqualification of the AJ Ginnis, -the officials determined the Greek skier straddled a gate-, the Norwegian was the winner.

AJ Ginnis finished second in the Men's slalom World Cup event in Chamonix on February 4th. He can become the first Greek winner of a World Cup event in any Olympic winter sport. The most recent countries to win their first World Cup event in Alpine Skiing both achieved this in the men's Slalom event: Kalle Palander for Finland (Kitzbühel, January 2003) and Dave Ryding for Great Britain (Kitzbühel, January 2022).

He won the Slalom silver medal at the 2023 Alpine World Ski Championships in Courchevel-Méribel.

Dominik Raschner recorded a World Cup podium in the Slalom for the first time in Adelboden. Previously two 16th places - in Adelboden and Kitzbühel in 2022 - were his best results in Slalom. His only World Cup podium was in the Parallel discipline in Lech-Zürs in 2021.

Until Kitzbühel, DNF2, Timon Haugan, 6th in Gurgl, 4th in Madonna di Campiglio, 9th in Adelboden, and 9th in Wengen, was the only skier besides Manuel Feller to have finished inside the Top-10 in all Slalom World

Cup races this season.


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