It was Switzerland’s Wendy Holdener who topped the Women’s combined event after a strong showing in the slalom. Today’s proceedings were delayed by heavy snow, which also forced the start to be moved to the reserve position further down the mountain.
Low visibility made the morning’s downhill event especially tricky with many competitors taking some rather unusual lines down the slope and others missing the gates entirely.
Participation in Alpine combined has been under much scrutiny in recent years, with several top skiers missing the event to focus on a single discipline. Sweden’s Frida Hansdotter reflected while talking to SportExpressen “I think it loses status and interest when the best aren’t participating”.
Tuesday’s Super G winner Mikaela Shiffrin was absent but American legend Lindsey Vonn did compete and came home in 8th place after the downhill despite suffering with a problematic rib.
Lindsey’s final competitive run will come on Sunday in the Women’s downhill, Vonn is adamant she has more to offer in her final competition “From the first jump down it was pretty decent, but it was a good test for me,” she said. “I have another gear left to go and I’m just going to rest tomorrow and be ready for Sunday”.
Sunday’s competition will also be attended by legendary Swedish Alpine skier Ingemar Stenmark, who will be there by Vonn’s request in what should be a fitting farewell to one of skiing’s most prolific athlete’s.
It was Austria’s Ramano Siebenhofer who lead after the morning’s downhill but she was unable to capitalise on a strong start and missed out on an overall podium. This was the first time Austria hasn’t won a medal in Women’s Alpine combined since 1991.
Norway’s Ragnhild Mowinckel picked up her first World Championship medal by finishing in third place overall. She commented, “It’s so cool, this is for some of the things you dream of and to put it all together on one day when it counts is the best feeling ever”.
Today’s event was well attended and this was clearly appreciated by Mowinckel “This is as close to home as it gets. It’s so much fun having friends & family cheer me on. Even the Swedes I feel cheered me on here. Yeah, kind of like home.”
Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova turned out an incredible run during the slalom event and propelled herself from 8th in the standings to 2nd overall, narrowly missing out on gold by three hundredths of a second.
Saturday sees the men in action in the Alpin downhill. The event is due to start at 12.30 CET.