SLALOM OPENING GOES TO PLAN: MÖLGG LEADS FISCHER TO A SUCCESSFUL TEAM RESULT
What happened at the men's Slalom in Levi (FIN) on Sunday was nothing short of incredible. A tight race all round, a remarkable climb up the standings and a moving farewell made this race in the far north a highlight at the beginning of the season.
Boost of confidence for Manfred Mölgg
Fourth, fifth, sixth and eighth places – the results speak for themselves but there is a lot more to them: the race may have ended without a podium placing for Fischer Sports this time, but Manfred Mölgg (ITA) who came fourth only just missed out on what would have been his second top-three result of the season. This was the first boost of confidence for him in quite a while. Following in Mölgg's slipstream: team colleague Patrick Thaler (ITA) who finished in fifth place.
Herbst causes a sensation after 12 days of training
The absolute sensation of the day came from an Austrian. Already preparing for the journey home, fortune was on the side of Reinfried Herbst who was 31st after the first run but just made it in to the top 30 due to a disqualification. All of a sudden it was time for him to put his boots on again and get back on his skis. Herbstl went on to ski a remarkable second run (with the fastest time) and finished in sixth place. "It was an emotional rollercoaster, beginning with 31st place after the first run and me packing away my boots as a result and then I get a second chance and ski the fastest time. Sixth place in the first race of the season which already beats my best result from last season as a whole. My thanks go out to all the people who continued to place their trust in me and, above all, thank you Fischer!"
Fischer Racing Director more than happy
Fischer racing Director Siegi Voglreiter is also delighted about yesterday's excellent result: "It's incredible what happened there. Four skiers among the best ten, including Kostelić in eighth. Plus a podium finish for Jens Byggmark who uses our ski boots. The entire performance of our team was more than successful."
A golden boy makes his farewell
Regrettably, however, the time had also come for the Fischer crew to say goodbye to an outstanding athlete in Levi. Kalle Palander took the opportunity on home ground to retire from active racing. Countless injuries and never-ending health problems prompted the successful Finn to make what was without doubt a hard decision. He was presented with a golden ski boot as a leaving present – "Kalle Palander Edition". "To remind him of all the successful times we had together," reflected Voglreiter, who gave him the boot personally.