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Monday, March 18, 2013

Maze and Hirscher win 2013 ski world-cup

Maze wins and breaks records but can't take all the Globes

24 podiums, 11 victories, 2 "small globes" and the Overall title with record of points ever scored by a human being in a single season. Yes, Tina Maze just finished the best season ever in the history of ski world cup, but probably a little of a bitter taste stayed as she was very close to win all the crystal globes possible. She unarguably very unlucky with the cancellation of the final downhill where a top 7 finish would have given her the title, no matter the results of the others as she was just 1 point trailing to the injured Lindsey Vonn, who thanks to the horrible weather (and in all honesty the dumbness of FIS rules, which don't let the final races be replaced, not even in the space of the same week) won the crystal globe for the 6th time in a row - that's a record too-.
The same bad weather forced the organizers to cancel the superg too and by the effect of this choice, Tina won the superg globe without the need of defending it from the last assault of the only rival left, Julia Mancuso, who later of twitter expressed all her resentment towards FIS, which decided to hold the team event the really next day, instead of letting girls fight for either the superg or downhill title.
It wasn't then a surprise that USA pulled out of the team event and Maze didn't compete for her country there. In that atmosphere of controversy Germany could run off with the victory ahead of Sweden and Italy.
Saturday was then the day of the slalom, the last unsecure title to be given in the season, Maze was leading the standing thanks to a win in the last race, which made her overcome Mikaela Shiffrin, but the two were just few points away one from the other, hence the one of the two placing ahead of the other would have won the title.
After the first run Maze seemed so sure of the win, as she was leading the race with a margin of over a second, but in the second run the just-become-adult Shiffrin, having nothing to lose skied probably the most impressive run of the year pulverizing whatever attempt to overcome her in the final standing. As usual Tina tried it all, but there was nothing she could have done there and in the end she finished only 3rd, behind a surprising Bernadette Schild.
Tears run down the face of Tina as she crossed the finish line, Lenzerheide, after having given her first win in slalom two years ago, seemed to have become jinxed as in two days she lost everything she could have lost, but all in honesty Shiffrin totally deserved this title and for sure she will see many more coming in the next years, so there's no shame in losing a tight battle with her.
In the last day of this 2013 ski world cup GS was to be hold. Title was already secure to go to Tina, but despite that, you could see how much she wanted to finish this season well, because she attacked from the very first gates of the first run too and she was second only to Tessa Worley when one run was yet to be done.
In the second run a great comeback avoided Lara Gut to snatch her second ever podium in Giant Slalom, but nothing could stop Maze to take her 11th win of the season, she was just flawless and not even an inspired second run by Worley could do much to stop her. Tessa finished second in the end and Tina could finish the season exactly the same way as she started, winning.

Weather kills Svindal's last chances, Marcel wins the Overall again

Heading to the world cup finals Aksel Lund Svindal knew his hopes for the overall title were really few, he was trailing in the run for the title of some 50 points to Hirscher, but he could have had a chance if he had won both the downhill and the superg as everything would have then been on the Austrian's young shoulders, but the Norge didn't even have the chance to try, because as it happened for the Ladies, weather has been harsh during the days of the speed events and forced organizers to call them off.
Svindal won two globes nevertheless, the superg and the downhill ones, yet this wasn't enough to challenge Hircher as the number of slalom and giant slaloms this season was a lot bigger than the one of speed races and in the technical ones Marcel kept an impressive pace, which in the end could give him the overall title, even if he competed only in those two events.
After the team event, it was giant slalom's day and as usual it was an only man show, with Ted Ligety dominating the race in both runs, in the second of which he tamed the attack of Hirscher and Pinturault, who finished 2nd and 3rd, making the final standingof the race, the same of the GS cup!
Last day was the one for slalom, once again everything was already decided for the discipline globe and the overall was already "booked" under Hirscher's name, nonetheless the race was hugely enetertaining and in the end Felix Neureuther could snatch an impressive win over Hirscher and the once again incredible Ivica Kostelic, who's been able to win last week in Kranjska Gora and now to finish on podium despite another severe injury occurred to his knee not long ago.

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