Slalom in Adelboden – This time the Swiss are the losers in the hundredths of a thriller

Slalom in Adelboden - This time the Swiss are the losers in the hundredths of a thriller

Marco Schwarz wins the Adelboden slalom. The Swiss are convincing as a team – but that’s no longer enough.

It wasn't enough: Loïc Meillard finished fifth in the slalom.
It wasn’t enough: Loïc Meillard finished fifth in the slalom.

Photo: Peter Schneider (Keystone)

Four hundredths. A blink of an eye maybe – nothing more. That’s how much Loïc Meillard is missing in the Adelboden slalom for a podium. Ultimately, he is classified in 5th place and is the best of a good Swiss team: Tanguy Nef (6th), Daniel Yule (7th), Ramon Zenhäusern (13th), Luca Aerni (20th) and Marc Rochat (21st) they all get World Cup points. But they have to watch as Marco Schwarz wins the first slalom victory for Austria in two years.

It is podium places that the self-confident Swiss are aiming for. Because they started the winter with the reference of six top 3 ranks from last season. And because it started extremely well with the victory of Zen houses in Alta Badia. But since then it has never been quite right for the Swiss.

Up and down at Yule

And that’s not only, but also due to Yule. The defending champion has not yet completely convinced in four races. The performance at Chuenisbärgli can be described as a reflection of his achievements. Yule fails the first run, in the afternoon he sets the fastest time. “I’m glad I was able to switch between them,” he says. “But as you can see, you can’t afford the slightest mistake, otherwise the podium will be gone.”

It is similar with Meillard, who lacks a little energy after the two giant slaloms on Friday and Saturday (6th and 3rd). “After the second run, my legs were really heavy,” he says. “Of course I was disappointed at first, but after the long weekend I can be satisfied with this 5th place.”

Now the technicians are moving to Wengen. With unchanged expectations – that means: a podium place is needed.

Maneuvering is no longer an option

To do that, the Swiss have to be more aggressive. Or, to put it in the words of Ramon Zenhäusern: «We have to attack even more. In the past you were able to use tactics from time to time, today the motto is: Push down the stick from the first to the last goal, otherwise you’ll be 13th at the end. His announcement is important if you consider the distances between the previous slaloms.

In Adelboden there are 14 drivers within one second, in Zagreb there were 16, in Madonna di Campiglio 17 and at the start in Alta Badia 15, Zen houses sees the main reasons for the special circumstances this winter: The first race took place around a month later than usual, so all drivers had more time to prepare. In addition, there were good training conditions practically everywhere. “Everyone benefited from this,” says Zenhäusern. But by “all” he also means the Swiss.

With that we say goodbye. A short race report will appear here shortly, a more detailed one will follow in the course of the afternoon.

Thank you for reading along and we wish you a nice Sunday.

The final ranking.
The final ranking.

Photo: Screenshot Teletext

The Austrian Marco Schwarz wins the Adelboden slalom ahead of the German Linus Strasser and the American Dave Ryding.

The Swiss missed the podium, but the team result is still impressive: Loïc Meillard is fifth, Tanguy Nef sixth and Daniel Yule seventh. Ramon Zenhäusern misses the top ten as 13th.

The Frenchman starts with over 4 tenths. Can he cross the finish line with the lead? He is losing time easily, but the lead is still big. After the middle part it is again more than 6 tenths. But it gets tight again on the finish slope. And it’s not enough. He is only eighth, Black wins the slalom.

Is there also a winner from France in slalom? Two French are still upstairs. Muffat-Jeandet is on the way. But he threads in before the second split, climbs back and still drives to the finish.

Will the Swiss get on the podium? He can easily expand at the top, drives down cleanly, is up to Schwarzer. Great ride, but just barely enough. Fifth intermediate place, 0.19 seconds behind.

He also starts very quickly and can build on until the first split. In the middle part he loses, but is still 0.3 seconds ahead. On the finish slope he shows easy effort and enough. 0.14 seconds ahead.

What can the Swede show on the course that his trainer set? Almost too much risk at the top, but can keep yourself on your feet. Minimal lead before the finish slope, but here he loses and then a big mistake. Was that too much of a risk? It is only the 13th intermediate rank.

The Norwegian has a lead of 0.41 seconds, but is continuously losing time. He doesn’t seem to go all out and so it’s only the 6th intermediate rank, behind Nef and Yule on 4th and 5th.

And the only Russian started. Very aggressive ride, full of risk and so he can improve, but in the middle part he loses and is behind. He did not manage the finish slope completely without mistakes and so it was sixth, right behind Yule.

The top eight are on the way. The decision is imminent. Ryding takes a 3.33 second lead from the first run and can extend it. Almost 0.6 seconds ahead, but then an uncertainty on the steep slope. And it’s just barely enough. He is 0.01 seconds behind Strasser.

Can the next Swiss do it better? Nef can also expand at the top as Strasser did not drive optimally. With a small lead he goes into the steep slope and loses there because of small mistakes. He is third, 0.09 seconds back.

And the top ten are on the way. Zen houses started. The Valais can expand, is in good rhythm, but loses almost all of his lead in the middle section. He drives long distances on the finish slope and is classified in 6th place, 0.75 seconds behind.

And the next attack: Kristofferson can also expand above, but then he threads in before the second intermediate time. He can stand on his feet, but his race is over.

The winner from Zagreb has started. The German also drives aggressively and can extend his lead. Although he lost time on the finish slope, he took the lead with a margin of 0.03 seconds.

Very risky start from the Austrian. But that pays off in the middle section. What does Matt show on the final slope? Have a good trip and that’s enough. He is 0.12 seconds faster than Yule and takes the lead.

The Italian cannot defend his lead at the top. Before the final slope it is just behind. He loses even more time and is currently in fourth place.

Can last year’s winner improve in the second run? He has a 0.36 second lead at the start and can easily be improved. He risks a lot in the middle section, but loses a bit, but can reach the finish slope with a lead. And that’s enough: he takes the lead with a lead of 0.42 seconds!

Yesterday he dominated, but today it wasn’t going well: What does Piturault show in the second run. He has a lead of 0.33 seconds at the start, but loses it before the finish slope. The giant slalom suits him better. At the finish it is the fourth intermediate place and 0.57 seconds behind. Pertl remains in the lead.

And the second Swiss is on the way. He loses the lead in the first split, but there is still something left below. Small residue before the finish slope. There he slips away a little, loses his rhythm and is 1.17 seconds behind.

And immediately the next Austrian. Great start, he increased the lead to 0.3 seconds and kept it until the finish slope. Because of a few small mistakes there, he fails because of his compatriot’s time: 0.11 seconds behind.

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Slalom Adelboden time Swiss losers hundredths thriller


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