After a 6 day break (8.12-14.12), Men are travelling from France to the neighbouring country of Italy where they will compete in Super-G event which will mark the 8th event of the season and 3rd Super-G race.
First let’s take a look at how men competed in Val d’Isere, where we only saw Giant Slalom, whereas Slalom event was cancelled due to heavy snowfall and wind. The mentioned Slalom race has been moved to Saalbach-Hinterglemm on 20th of December, just like the Giant Slalom in Sölden which was cancelled for the same reason. The Giant Slalom will take place 1 day prior to Slalom, on 19th of December in Saalbach-Hinterglemm.
In the most recent event this season; the Giant Slalom event in Val d’Isere, it was Marcel Hirscher who won his 2nd event of the season and 1st Giant Slalom race, after finishing 2nd in Beaver Creek. With his exceptional performance, he was over a second in front of Henrik Kristoffersen (+1.18) and +1.31 in front of Matts Olsson. At the 4th place finished Alexis Pinturault, the most decorated French alpine skier, who has won this event last season, but was almost 1.5s too slow to catch up to Hirscher (+1.46).
With the upcoming event being a Super-G discipline, we need to take a look at how male skiers performed in recent Super-G events.
The opening Super-G event took place in Lake Louise on 25th of November, where it was last years champion Kjetil Jansrud who celebrated his 1st win of the season, which was also his 2nd consecutive win at this venue. He finished the race 0.14s in front of Vincent Kriechmayr and 0.21s in front of Mauro Caviezel.
The second and most recent Super-G event took place in Beaver Creek on 2nd of December, where Max Franz won his 2nd race of the season, after a win in Downhill race in Lake Louise. He finished the race 0.33s in front of Mauro Caviezel. At third place, we saw 3 athletes who were all 0.41s behind Max Franz, those athletes were; Aksel Lund Scandal, Dominik Paris and Aamodt Aleksander Kilde.
As of now, Mauro Caviezel is 1st in the Super-G leaderboard, with 140 points. Close behind its last years champion Kjetil Jansrud with 126 and at third, it’s Max Franz with 118. The 4th place belongs to Vincent Kriechmayr (116) and 5th to Aksel Lund Svindal (105). With only 2 racers behind us this leaderboard does not give us much information about who will end up first, however, I still decided to include it for a good measure.
The next event, as mentioned will take place at Val Gardena/Gröden. Gherdëina (Italian; Val Gardena) is a valley in the northern part of Italy which is well known for its rock climbing on the Dolomites and of course skiing. The first FIS Alpine World Ski Championship took place at this venue back in 1970, and it has become a regular venue for skiing competitions.
Looking at the last year’s Super-G race at this venue, it was Josef Ferstl who won the 1st race of his career, it was also his first podium finish. Close behind finished Max Franz (+0.02) and Matthias Mayer at 3rd place (+0.10). Kjetil Jansrud sadly made a mistake and finished at 35th place, over 3 seconds too slow (+3.11) after a good performance in the upper part of the slope.
But who will be the winner this year? Will it be one of the favourites or will an underdog surprise us all once more? This question will be answered tomorrow at 12:00 CET, but for now, let’s take a look at our favourites and predictions.
With his win in Beaver Creek, Max Franz can become the first man to win 2 consecutive Super-G events since Kjetil Janbsrud in 2016, It will also mean he would be the first Austrian man to do so since Stephan Eberharter in 2002. Max Franz has good memories in Val Gardena, as he has won the first race of his career here in a Downhill race back in 2016. Last season, we saw him finishing 2nd at this venue in Super-G and 3rd in Downhill race. In total, he has finished on podium 3 times in Val Gardena and he will look to finish on the podium once more, however, a win here would, of course, be a result he will be chasing.
Aksel Lund Svindal as of now has 16 World Cup Super-G wins with his name on them, which puts them in the 2nd place in all-time Super-G wins, right after Hermann Maier, who has 24. In his career, Svindal has won 4 times in Val Gardens Super-G events, most recently in 2015/16 season. As for this season, Aksel Lund Svindal has not yet won a race but achieved 2 podium finishes in Beaver Creek (Downhill and Super-G). With a total of 35 World Cup wins in his career, he is only 1 shy of reaching the 7th place of all-time world cup wins which is currently held by Benjamin Raich (36).
Last year’s Super-G champion Kjetil Jansrud already won his 1st race of the season in Lake Louise, which puts him in the 2nd place in Super-G standings, only 14 points behind Mauro Caviezel. With 12 wins in Super-G in his career, he is in the top 3 for most men’s World Cup race wins in Super-G, 4 wins behind Aksel Lund Svindal and 12 behind Hermann Maier. Jansrud is also among 3 men who won multiple races in Val Gardena (2). Last year we saw Jansrud failing to perform in Val Gardena after a big mistake which saw him finishing over 3 seconds behind Josef Ferstl, this year, however, we expect him to not make the same mistake and compete for a top spot. If he manages to win here, it would mark his 50th win in all disciplines and his 3rd win in Val Gardena Super-G race.
Mauro Caviezel is the only men skier who finished on the podium in both Super-G events this season; 3rd in Lake Louise and 2nd in Beaver Creek. As of now, he is ranked 1st in Super-G and will be hoping to hold on to his position, but another podium finish will be needed to do so. In his career, Mauro Caviezel has finished on the podium 4 times (1DH and 3 Super-G) but has not yet won a race in World Cup. For this race, we expect another great performance from this Swiss skier. He has achieved 2 podium finishes this season and we believe he can do it once more.
In the last Super-G event in Beaver Creek, Dominik Paris finished 3rd, 0.41s behind Max Franz. That was his 24th podium finish in his career and his 7th Super-G podium. Looking at his career as a whole, Dominik Paris has won 9 races; 8 Downhill and 1 Super-G. His best ranking in Super-G event was 2nd in 2015, however, he finished only 16th last season. In Val Gardena, Paris has stood on the podium twice. He was 3rd in Downhill and 2nd in Super-G in 2015. Looking at the most recent Super-G event, his podium finish was impressive, as he stood among the world best Super-G skiers, and from what he has shown us this season, he belongs there. As mentioned, Paris only achieved 1 podium finish in Val Gardena, 3 years ago, but we believe he just might add another podium finish today. If he can perform on the level he did in Beaver Creek, the top 3 finish is a realistic result, and with the odds of 9.00, we will gladly take the bet.
|Market||Prediction||Pinnacle Odds||Bet 365 Odds||Stake||Won / Lost|
|Outright||Kjetil Jansrud||/||5.00||1 Unit||Lost|
|Podium Finish||Kjetil Jansrud||/||2.10||2 Units||Won|
|Outright||Aksel Lund Svindal||/||7.00||1 Unit||Won|
|Podium Finish||Aksel Lund Svindal||/||2.50||2 Units||Won|
|Podium Finish||Mauro Caviezel||/||3.40||2 Units||Lost|
|Podium Finish||Dominik Paris||/||9.00||0.50 Unit||Lost|
|Podium Finish||Christof Innerhofer||/||13.00||0.50 Unit||Won|
|Podium Finish||Peter Fill||/||15.00||0.50 Unit||Lost|
*Final No odds at Pinnacle when the preview went online.