Bormio and Semmering Preview
Bormio is a town and comune in the Province of Sondrio, Lombardy region of the Alps in northern Italy at the center of the upper Valtellina valley. This valley is a fundamental point in the history of alpine skiing. This is where champions such as Deborah Compagnoni and Pietro Vitalini started their careers and some of the most beautiful and meaningful pages of alpine skiing were written.
The FIS Ski World Cup 2020 will return to Bormio with a Downhill on December 28 and a Super-G on December 29.
Bormio has a well-earned reputation on the men’s circuit as being one the most challenging Downhill races in the world with racers facing a dark, fast, bumpy, and icy ride year after year.
Alongside the Streif of Kitzbuhel, the Stelvio slope is considered to be one of the most technical and spectacular slopes all over the world.
Champions of the caliber of Luc Alphand, Stephan Eberharter, Johann Grugger, Lasse Kjus, Hermann Maier, Daron Rahlves, Andreas Schifferer, Hannes Trinkl, Fritz Stobl, Bode Miller, and Michael Walchhofer have triumphed on the “Stelvio”.
It was inaugurated in 1982 for the first edition of the World Series. The course hosted two editions of the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships, in 1985 and in 2005. It also hosted two World Cup Finals, in 1995 and 2008. From 1993 the Stelvio has yearly hosted the World Cup Downhill Men.
Start Elevation: 2255m (Downhill)
Finish Elevation: 1,245 m
Vertical Drop: 1010 m (Downhill)
Distance: 3250m (Downhill)
Max. slope: 63 %
Bormio Program (ITA)
Downhill. Monday, December 28th. 11:30 (CET)
Super-G. Tuesday, December 29th. 11:30 (CET)
Dominik Paris is the man to beat on the Stelvio. Bormio means a lot to the 31-year-old as many career highlights, including his first World Cup win, have come in the Italian town.
He set the record of victories in Bormio: 5 downhill races (2012, 2017, 2018, and a double in 2019) and a Super-G (2018).
Aleksander Aamodt Kilde won the last World Cup Downhill and Super-G races in Val Gardena on December 18 and 19, 2020.
The last skier to win successive World Cup Downhill events was Thomas Dreßen in February 2020 (Garmisch-Partenkirchen and SaalbachHinterglemm).
Beat Feuz finished in third place in the last World Cup Downhill race in Val Gardena to claim his first podium of this season. Feuz, who won the last three Downhill crystal globes, is hoping to claim his first WC Downhill win since 18 January, when he won in Wengen.
Matthias Mayer won two of the last six Downhill events in the World Cup, both in 2020 (Kitzbühel, Kvitfjell). The last Austrian man to win three World Cup Downhill races in a single calendar year was Hannes Reichelt in 2015 (3).
Ryan Cochran-Siegle finished second in Val Gardena to claim his first career podium. Cochran-Siegle is hoping to become the first skier representing the USA to win a World Cup Downhill event since Travis Ganong in Garmisch-Partenkirchen on 27 January 2017.
Kilde can become the first male skier to win consecutive World Cup Super-G events since Italy's Dominik Paris in March 2019 (Kvitfjell and Soldeu).
Mauro Caviezel followed up his win in the opening Super-G event of this World Cup season in Val d'Isère with a second-place finish in the most recent super-G in Val Gardena on December 18. Caviezel can become the first male skier to reach the podium in each of the opening three Super-G races of a World Cup season since Norway's Kjetil Jansrud in 2016-2017.
In 2018, Dominik Paris was unbeatable on the Stelvio. He takes the win ahead of teammate Christof Innerhofer and Switzerland’s Beat Feuz.
It was a fight from top to bottom, on a course that many described as the "toughest they have ever raced on". But there are some athletes that are not impressed by the course conditions and know how to keep the line over the bumps and icy sections.
Christof Innerhofer is also one of those athletes who like when the conditions are tough and technical skills play an important role, and two years ago he was able to ski to his third-second place of the season, +0.36 off Paris’ pace.
After winning the Downhill for the third time the day before, he claims the double with the victory in the Super-G. Olympic Champion Matthias Mayer and Val Gardena winner Aleksander Aamodt Kilde round out the podium.
It was a tight race, actually the tightest possible, as Mayer finishes only +0.01 behind Paris.
In 2019 the first Downhill on the Stelvio local hero, Dominik Paris won the race ahead of Beat Feuz and Matthias Mayer.
The Italian speed ace draws perfect trajectories and becomes the first skier in history to achieve four Downhill victories – three in a row - in Bormio.
Runner up Beat Feuz (SUI) does his best to keep up with Paris and achieves his third podium in three races with a solid second place (+0.39).
Matthias Mayer (AUT) finishes third, just 0.03s behind Feuz.
After winning the Downhill for the fourth time the day before, Dominik Paris claims the double with the victory in the second Downhill. Paris pulls out another great run which seems much stronger than what his competitors can show.
He clinches the win by only 0.08s ahead of Urs Kryenbuehl (SUI), who does a perfect run starting with bib 25.
Beat Feuz (SUI), was again on the podium and concluded third in the second Downhill, 0.26s behind Paris.
Semmering is a town in the district of Neunkirchen in the Austrian state of Lower Austria.
The 25th anniversary of the Women's Ski World Cup at Semmering will take place on December 28th and 29th.
In December 1995, the first Women's Ski World Cup races were held at Hirschenkogel in Semmering.
Mikaela Shiffrin won the most recent Giant Slalom event in the World Cup, in Courchevel on 14 December. The last time she won back-to-back Giant Slalom events in the World Cup was four years ago, when she won in Semmering, on December 27 and 28, 2016.
Petra Vlhová finished on the podium in four of the last five World Cup Giant Slalom events, with the only exception of the most recent Giant Slalom in Courchevel (DNF).
Federica Brignone leads the Giant Slalom World Cup standings. She recorded two-second places and a fifth place in the three Giant Slalom events this World Cup season.
The last 28 women's World Cup Slalom events were either won by Shiffrin (19) or Petra Vlhová (9), since Frida Hansdotter won in Flachau on January 10, 2017.
Petra Vlhová has won each of the last five Slalom events in the World Cup.
In the twenty-one century, only three skiers have won at least six consecutive World Cup events in any discipline. Janica Kostelic won eight slalom events in a row from November 2000 to February 2001, Lindsey Vonn won six successive downhill events between March 2009 and January 2010 and Shiffrin had three different streaks of at least six consecutive wins in slalom events (7 in 2016, 7 in 2018-2019 and 6 in 2019).
Back in 2018, Petra Vlhova wrote history for Slovakia by winning the Audi FIS Ski World Cup Giant Slalom race in Semmering (AUT) as an underdog for the victory. It was the first World Cup podium and win in Giant Slalom for a skier from Slovakia, male or female, and fans traveled from nearby Bratislava to cheer on Vlhova. It was also the first podium and victory in Giant Slalom for the skier that until then she regularly challenges for wins in slalom.
Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany pushed from 10th position into second place with the fastest second-run time of the day. Tessa Worley of France joined the trio to round out the podium in third after sitting in the seventh position after the first run.
The next day Mikaela Shiffrin earned her 36th career World Cup victory in slalom at Semmering (AUT). With her victory in Semmering, Mikaela Shiffrin passed Austrian Marlies Schild in the history books to become the most successful female slalom skier of all time. She also became the first World Cup skier, male or female, to win 15 World Cup races in a single calendar year (2018).
Mikaela Shiffrin held almost a half-second lead after the first run over closest rival Petra Vlhova of Slovakia, who won Friday's giant slalom race. The American was able to hold on for the win by a 0.29-second margin. Wendy Holdener of Switzerland rounded out the podium in third after skiing the fastest second run.
Semmering Program (AUT)
Giant Slalom. Monday, December 28th. 1st run 10:00, 2nd run 13:00 (CET)
Slalom. Tuesday, December 29th. 1st run 15:15, 2nd run 18:30 (CET)