The 32-year-old Styrian only had to admit defeat to the superior local hero Sandra Näslund on Sunday, who won her 15th World Cup in a row and thus equaled a record set by skiing legend Ingemar Stenmark. Ofner, who was fourth the day before after a driving error in the final, moved up from fourth after the start to second in the final.
For Ofner it was the twelfth World Cup podium of her career, the first since third place in Idre exactly a year ago. “It’s crazy to finish second here. I got very emotional at the finish line because I had a really difficult summer with a long-term corona infection,” recalled the Styrian. “I didn’t get along with the start section, but I knew exactly what I had to do on the home stretch.”
Ofner celebrated her only World Cup victory in Val Thorens in 2020. However, Näslund has subscribed to first place in the women’s World Cup for over a year. Only her compatriot Ingemar Stenmark had previously won 15 races in a single FIS discipline from 1978 to 1980 in giant slalom. “He’s won so many World Cups, I’m still behind him,” assured the 26-year-old Olympic champion. But the brand means a lot to her.
Sonja Gigler from Vorarlberg came sixth in the second competition in Sweden, Andrea Limbacher from Upper Austria came 16th after dropping out in the quarter-finals. Mathias Graf from Vorarlberg finished seventh in the men’s category, Tristan Takats from Lower Austria was eleventh. “Considering the fact that I drove the first races on this course, I’m not dissatisfied with my performance,” said two-time winner Graf. With his second win of the season, Reece Howden extended his World Cup lead. The Canadian is ahead of the next races on 16./17. February on the Reiteralm in Styria 153 points ahead of Graf.
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