ONE VICTORY, 160 POINTS AND A CRASH
Kitzbühel is a special challenge for the Croatian hero with 100 points there for the taking every year in the combined event. Simply ready for the taking – all you have to do is get them. That is, if it wasn't for the all so important Slalom. If you rely on tactics too much then you can forget about a podium finish in the Slalom, take too many risks and there is a chance you might ski out. Kostelić may not have skied the race in his normal impressive style but he handled it well. Despite the awkward situation he didn't think too much about tactics in the Slalom: "I took more risks today and put the combined points out of my mind. This is why I made mistakes. I'm satisfied with third place in the Slalom." Despite some mistakes and third place in the Slalom he finally won the Kitzbühel Combined in an impressive manner, earning him the title of
Deville successful for the first time – with Fischer boots.
Cristian Deville put in a remarkable performance in today's Slalom with a sensational race on a very difficult piste which earned him his first World Cup victory. At 31 years of age he doesn't feel as if he is a late starter. "I'm not 31 years old, I'm 31 years young!"
It was the third podium of the season for the popular Italian who has been using Fischer boots since summer 2011. And now he is a force to be reckoned with in the battle for leadership in Slalom that is now taking place, too. He is the first Slalom winner of the season not to be called either Ivica Kostelić or Marcel Hirscher.
Cause for celebration: Poutiainen and Hosp
The women also got a breath of male World Cup air this weekend. Due to a lack of snow the technical races scheduled for Maribor were held on the selective course in Kranjska Gora (SLO). Tanja Poutiainen (FIN) was pleased with her second place in the race and second podium of the season: "I'm very, very happy and satisfied! I think I'm back on track again. The piste was very demanding but that's my kind of thing. It was fun to ski on such a difficult course." Niki Hosp also drew attention to herself with a convincing result. Sixth place in the final rankings was a successful achievement again for the Austrian after a long, lean spell. "This is certainly a confidence booster of course," says the racer from Bichlbach, visibly relieved. Following the "brutally difficult race" she will now be preparing for weekend in St. Moritz where a Super Combined awaits the ladies – one in which we may even see the 29-year-old heading for the winners podium…