It was the climax to the World Cup season in Giant Slalom that had people on the edge of their seats. In the end it came down to hundredths of seconds that decided the race and with it the Globe. With five victories this season in Giant Slalom, including this race, the Globe went to Ted Ligety, Alexis Pinturault took runners up spot and Felix Neureuther third; Hirscher was fourth.
Ligety knew what he had to do and that was win. Second after the first run and with the snow deteriorating in the warm conditions, Ligety admitted that “this has been a difficult period to have come through, I had to win and Marcel had to come fourth or worse and that is something you cannot count on. But things definitely went the right way today.”
With just one racer to go, Ligety lead in the finish; Hirscher was third. Felix Neureuther had a window of 0.27 to fit into between Ligety and Hirscher to give Ligety his sixth World Cup Giant Slalom Globe. At the first two splits the gap was close, mere hundredths favouring Ligety.
At the finish it could not have been closer: The win was Ligety’s but the gap between Neureuther and Hirscher was just one hundredth of a second. Ligety had tied with Hirscher on points yet won the Globe on count back of race wins: Five World Cup Giant Slalom wins to two meant that Ligety took the Globe!
“I had to ski well and have luck on my side today,” Ligety explained when looking back at the gap to Alexis Pinturault (0.03) and the gap between Neureuther and Hirscher (0.01) in third and fourth. “It feels pretty awesome to have the luck on my side today,” admitted Ligety.
This was win number 22 for Ligety and his fifth Globe and afterwards he explained what it felt like to win the Globe again: “I would say that the first one felt the greatest but this one is maybe second because it was so hard fought because of the scenario for it happen was so tight. After Adelboden I thought I would have no chance at all for the title. To get it surprises me but makes it all that much better.”
With Aksel Lund Svindal crashing out on the first run, he finished second in the race for the Overall.
1. Ted Ligety (USA) HEAD
2. Alexis Pinturault (FRA)
3. Felix Neureuther (GER)
15. Bode Miller (USA) HEAD