Ted Ligety with the globe and three World Champs medals in hand after winning the Audi FIS World Cup Finals giant slalom in Lenzerheide on Saturday. (Getty Images/Agence Zoom/Alain Grosclaude)
LENZERHEIDE, Switzerland (March 16) – World Champion Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) punctuated the best season of his career with a sixth giant slalom win at the World Cup Finals on Saturday. He joined Ingemar Stenmark as the only other man to win six or more World Cup giant slalom races in a single season. He has stood on all eight giant slalom podiums this season, a feat not accomplished in the last 31 years. His triple World Championships gold was puctuated when he locked his fourth Audi FIS Alpine World Cup giant slalom last week after winning in Kransjka Gora, Slovenia. With his historic victory, Ligety eclipsed 1,000 World Cup points for the first time in his career and guaranteed a third place finish in the overall standings.
World Champion Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) punctuated the best season of his career with a sixth giant slalom win at the World Cup Finals on Saturday.
He joined Ingemar Stenmark as the only other man to win six or more World Cup giant slalom races in a single season.
He has won six of eight giant slalom race and stood on eight of eight giant slalom podiums this season, which hasn’t been done since Stenmark in 1978-79 and Phil Mahre in 1981-82.
Ligety became the fifth man to record eight or more giant slalom podiums in one World Cup season, after Stenmark (twice), Mahre, Michael von Grünigen and Hermann Maier.
He also became the first man to podium the first eight giant slalom races of a World Cup season since von Grünigen did it in the first eight races of 1995-96.
New snow and cold temperatures made for a bumpy course and a difficult race for all the athletes, especially in the steep top section.
Ligety locked in his fourth Audi FIS Alpine World Cup giant slalom title last week after winning in Kransjka Gora, Slovenia.
Saturday’s win also secured Ligety into third place overall in the World Cup standings behind Austrian Marcel Hirscher and Norwegian Aksel Lund Svindal.
On Thursday, he was awarded Run of the Year for his 2.4 second dusting of the first run in Alta Badia, Italy. His fellow athletes elected him for the award.
QUOTES Ted Ligety Today was difficult. It wasn’t spring snow. It was very, very wintry; probably the most aggressive snow we’ve had all year. So that was definitely somewhat of an adjustment and to be able to win is just an awesome way to cap it off.
It’s so ridiculous; it has been such an amazing year. I never would have expected it and in a way it’s kind of a bummer as I will never be able to do that again. A really cool season and to finish it up with a victory… I couldn’t be more pleased.
It’s so tough to choose between the GS globe and my three gold medals, they are all so awesome and they all mean so much. But the globe I think is really cool as you have to be good all year while for the World Championships you could get lucky here and there. Anyhow it’s an awesome feeling to have the season I just had!
What she (Tina Maze) did this year was amazing, winning in all events. I think that’s every ski racer’s dream; to be able to win in every discipline and what she was able to do this year was truly amazing.
He (Marcel Hirscher) had another great year. His year in tech was crazy. It’s unbelievable for him to be on the podium in basically every single race outside of Beaver Creek super G and Adelboden. So his year was something really special. I really look up to his slalom skiing especially and what he’s able to do there. His consistency is something really special.
For me, my World Championships is the highlight of my year because those two weeks there was the best performance in skiing that I’ve had in my career. To do that over that period of time was really great. Being on the podium every race in giant slalom and winning six of eight is a really cool feeling.
Those records aren’t really my goal. It’s really neat to be able to achieve them. Anytime you’re mentioned in the same sentence as Stenmark is very surreal for any ski racer because he’s at another level that I don’t think is ever achievable. So to be at least mentioned in the same breath as him is a really cool feeling and something that I never would have guessed would be possible.
Yeah, it’s cool to be able to get third place in the overall. It’s a big step forward in the right direction for trying to go for the big globe. It’s nice to be among those names for next year and hopefully I can improve in other areas of my skiing.