First downhill win for Silvan Zurbriggen.

20/Dec/2010

First downhill win for Silvan Zurbriggen.

Riders in this news : 

The Swiss skier is now leading in the Downhill World Cup standing!

After achieved a series of promising performances in all specialties in recent weeks, Silvan Zurbriggen accomplished an amazing feat last Saturday as he dominated all his rivals on the ‘Saslong’ course at Val Gardena to win his first downhill at the end of the Italian World Cup ‘Classic’ .
For the Swiss, it was a very special triumph as he sees himself primarily as a slalom specialist – and also because he suffered a gruelling crash on the same course a few years ago.
In fact, the 29-year-old Rossignol and Lange champion who celebrated his maiden World Cup victory two years ago at Kitzbühel where he clinched the ‘classical’ Hahnenkamm combined, was pretty exhausted after the race when facing the press. 
 
“Yeah, I’m done, really tired now, it has been a very tough day for me and I just cannot show the strong emotion I’m feeling inside me right now, but I can tell you that I’m actually the happiest man on earth.”
“As you know I badly injured my knee here a few years ago and I was very lucky to get back on my skis after the surgery. The doctors did a fantastic job on my knee which had to be operated twice,” added Silvan, whose first big moment in his career was his silver medal in slalom at the 2003 FIS World Championships at St Moritz.
“I was afraid of these Camel Jumps during my practise runs this week, I could not take all risks there. I didn’t sleep well last night, I got up early and I was nervous before the race.”
“So to win my first downhill here is pretty amazing, in fact even crazy. At the start I watched the first skiers getting down the course on TV so I saw the bad crashes from Marco Sullivan and David Poisson. I was very impressed of course and then a lot of bad memories came back to my mind. I suddenly felt very hot and I had to produce a great effort to find back my concentration and my determination.”
“Fortunately I had a pretty solid clean run from top to bottom afterwards and then I saw that I had the fastest time when I crossed the finish line, it was amazing,” also commented the Swiss who never scored a single World Cup point in downhill here until today. “I had a hard time believing it, but in a way it’s a great revenge after all.”
 
This superb win is not a total surprise for Zurbriggen’s colleagues considering his promising 4th place at Lake Louise last month. He was proud to wear the read leader bib at the award ceremony but he doesn’t plan to defend his lead in a few weeks at Bormio.
 
“I’m not sure yet about my program after tomorrow’s giant slalom at Alta Badia, my original plan for this season was to relax during the Christmas break in order to tank some energy prior the heavy January schedule,” he explained at the press conference. 
 
“It’s a heavy program for me as I aim to compete in the combined events and in all the technical races, so it’s important for me not to race too much now.”
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