JASNÁ (March 21, 2021) – Alpine Ski World Cup season is a history since Sunday. It ended by Sunday’s races in Lenzerheide, Switzerland. After them came the time to award the best. And from Slovak point of view, it is especially pleasing that the overall WC standings winner is the Slovak representative Petra Vlhová. The organisers of March Audi FIS Ski World Cup 2021 in Jasná are very happy that they could contribute a little in the big success of Slovak sport – winning the big crystal globe.
Twenty-five years old racer from Liptov was in racing permanence for 155 days. This is exactly the time between the opening event of the season, the giant slalom race on October 17, 2020 in Sölden, Austria, and Sunday’s finale of the season in Switzerland.
When evaluating the journey after the extraordinary success, she herself mentioned that she was energized until the end of the season by the March Audi FIS World Cup 2021 in Jasná. “At home in Jasná, I experienced the most beautiful moments. Before March, many people did not believe in me anymore, but I came there changed and won the giant slalom, and finished second in the slalom,” said Petra Vlhová.
“Petra got the chance from us to train at the training slope. But everyone did that for the racer from their country. She won on the home slope and it helped her and started her up for the rest of the season. Winning the big globe is Petra’s excellent result. On behalf of the whole organising team, I can say that we are grateful and happy we could be a part of it,” says Matej Hulej, President of the Organising Committee in Jasná.
Unlike her biggest rivals, she raced in all disciplines at a solid level and as the only racer participated in all 31 races. In addition to six victories this season, the ambitious Slovak also added two second and two third places. She was not missing on the podiums at the mentioned races in Jasná – on Saturday’s slalom and on Sunday’s giant slalom.
“We are happy that the races in Jasná went well and the track for prepared for 100 %. And the words of appreciation from all teams that the track was perfect justify that. Everyone who took part in its preparation is proud of what Petra achieved in Jasná. They feel that they also participated a bit in winning the big globe,” said Jana Palovičová, the Chief of Race in Jasná.
She finished in top ten 21 times out of 30 races, and this is what significantly tilted the scales to her side in the fight for the big globe. She was in top 10 nine times in slalom, five times in giant slalom, three times in super G and downhill, and once in parallel giant slalom. To calculate her achievements this year, it is necessary to include two silver medals from the February World Championships in Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy.
Cancelling of the downhill and super G races during the WC finals in Lenzerheide helped the Slovak racer as well. Her Swiss rival Lara Gut-Behrami was supposed to score “obligatory” points in those disciplines. The sixth place in slalom was enough for the Slovak to confirm the overall triumph, and as the definite overall winner she finished eleventh in the giant slalom on Sunday.
Petra Vlhová achieved the absolute top in the World Cup after eight years from her debut in December 2012 in Semmering, Austria, where she finished eleventh. With years, first podiums and victories started to come, and it all peaked with the 2020/2021 season decorated by the big crystal globe.
Petra Vlhová was close to the big globe two years ago when she finished second, and she had to bow only before the then phenomenal Mikaela Shiffrin from the USA. Last year the Slovak racer finished third behind Federica Brignone from Italy and Shiffrin, but she was successful the third time.
Last year Petra Vlhová enjoyed winning two small globes for slalom and parallel disciplines, and she herself announced she would attack the big globe this season. It was a logical result of her cooperation with Italian coach Livio Magoni. In the past he worked also for Tina Maze from Slovenia during her successful journey after the overall triumph in the WC.