Ski slope built in Zagreb to mark 50 years of the World Cup
Organisers of the 11th Snow Queen ski race have prepared a 165-metre-long ski slope in downtown Zagreb at which FIS Alpine Ski World Cup winners will race on Wednesday.
Eighteen skiing champions, including Croatia’s siblings Janica and Ivica Kostelic, will race to mark 50 years of the World Cup.
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Zagreb is the only capital hosting a FIS Alpine Ski World Cup race this year and organisers went one step further, preparing a ski slope in the city centre. Last night trucks brought 900 cubic metres of snow to get a 40 cm snow cover.
Slalom gates such as those at the World Cup 50 years ago will be put up at the start, where the slope is 8 m wide, while state of the art gates will be put at the finish, where the slope is 10.5 m wide, whereby organisers want to show how technology changed over the years. Each participant will wear part of the equipment from their time.
The race in downtown Zagreb will be run by the World Cup’s first two winners, Jean-Claude Killy and Karl Schranz, as well as Annemarie Moser-Proell, Marc Girardelli, Marcel Hirscher, Alberto Tomba, Andreas Wnzel, Tamara McKinney, Pernilla Wiberg and Tina Maze. Skiers with outstanding careers will also partcipate, including Jure Kosir, Matjaz Vrhovnik, Hans Enn, Bojan Krizaj, Gunther Mader, Marco Buechel, Kristian Ghedina, Thomas Sykora, Spela Pretnar, Urska Hrovat and Alenka Dovzan.
It will be broadcast live by Austria’s ORF, Switzerland’s SRF, Sweden’s SVT, Eurosport, the BBC and Japan’s J Sports.
The slope will stay until January 15, by which time a skiing school for children be organised as part of the FIS ‘Bring Children to the Snow’ campaign.
Eighteen skiing champions, including Croatia’s siblings Janica and Ivica Kostelic, raced down a 200-metre makeshift slope to mark 50 years of the World Cup.
Male skiers competing in the Snow Queen race skied down the slope built from Bakaceva Street to the Mandusevac fountain in the city’s main Ban Josip Jelacic Square to draw starting numbers for the World Cup men’s slalom set for January 5.
Russian Alpine skier Aleksandr Khoroshilov will be the first to slalom down Mt Sljeme overlooking Zagreb on Thursday.
The second starting number was drawn by Italian Stefano Gross, and the third by Andre Myhrer of Sweden. The starting number 4 was drawn by Italian Manfred Moelgg, while German Felix Neureuther will race as fifth, followed by overall World Cup winner Marcel Hirscher of Austria and the world’s best slalom skier in 2016, Henrik Kristoffersen of Norway.