L Alpine skiing

Valerie Grenier celebrated her second World Cup victory. © APA/afp / JURE MAKOVEC

When your own trainer’s master plan comes to fruition

As was the case last year, the winner of the giant slalom in Kranjska Gora is called Valerie Grenier: In the place where she celebrated her first World Cup success in 2023, the Canadian was unbeatable this Saturday too. Her coach played a crucial role.

The conditions had changed slightly compared to the first run. Instead of the light drizzle, it snowed in the upper section. The course setting also had a completely different character: Canadian coach Pierre Miniotti flagged a run that turned significantly less and therefore had more speed. Valerie Grenier knew how to deal with it best and left all the ski luminaries behind.

After the first round, eight athletes were within 1,02 seconds. The battle for the podium places was correspondingly exciting, starting with Marta Bassino and Mikaela Shiffrin. However, both remained behind Franziska Gritsch, who had previously shown an aggressive, error-free ride. The first benchmark was set by the Norwegian Thea Louise Stjernesund, who took half a second off the Austrian - mainly thanks to a strong starting section. Shortly afterwards, Valerie Grenier showed that it could be done much faster. On her coach's course, the 27-year-old chose an extremely straight line, hit every turn and risked her life on the finish slope. The result was the superior lead and the fastest running time.

Brignone defends red jersey

It quickly became clear that this time could no longer be beaten. Both Lara Gut-Behrami and Federica Brignone bit their teeth on it. And half-time leader Petra Vlhova had nothing to oppose either. Although she was able to extend her lead in the upper area, Grenier was no match for the finish slope. The Slovakian even fell behind Brignone to fourth place. The Italian thus defended her lead in the discipline rankings. But Gut-Behrami is only 4 points behind.

Elisa Platino made a mistake in the second run. © Pentaphoto

Elisa Platino from Merano had the honor of opening the second run. The 24-year-old started with enthusiasm, but then made a serious mistake during a transition that prevented her from getting a better ranking. Platino, who finished 16th in Kranjska Gora last year, had to settle for 26th place. After all, she collected World Cup points for the third time in a row.

The result

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