Marco Odermatt seeking red at the start of the year
Marco Odermatt competed in 22 World Cup races in 2023, winning more than half of them. Next up are home races for the man from Nidwalden, who has eyes only for red in Wengen and Adelboden.
The 2023/24 World Cup winter got off to a slow start with all the race cancellations, but things really got going in December. The men have now completed 10 of the 41 races currently planned, with the two speed races on the “Stelvio” piste in Bormio completed most recently. And Marco Odermatt once again showed his class in Italy. He was so strong and successful that he will now wear the red start number when he tackles his home giant slalom on the Chuenisbärgli. He will also wear the red start number for the first downhill on the Lauberhorn on 11 January, and for the Super-G in Wengen on the following day. Odermatt leads the overall World Cup rankings with 636 points after eight races, while also leading the giant slalom and Super-G rankings. For the first time, he is also leading the downhill rankings too.
The man from Nidwalden was narrowly beaten by just hundredths of a second (not for the first time) in the downhill in Bormio, but Odi was happy with second place behind the rampant French skier Cyprien Sarrazin. The reason Odermatt was content was because of the performance he describes as a “dream run.” The Nidwalden native said, “When I crossed the finish line, I was convinced that I had done enough to win.” He continued that the only time in his career so far that he had performed so convincingly in the downhill was probably when he won the World Championship downhill in Courchevel.
The next day, Odermatt did even better in the Super-G with an “almost perfect race,” winning it comfortably. “You need so much self-confidence on such difficult slopes, but you don't want to overdo it,” said the 26-year-old Stöckli racer, once again emphasizing that he is not only a brilliant skier, but also possesses great racing intelligence.
It was also pleasing to see that Marco Odermatt was backed up by strong performances from Alexis Monney and Marco Kohler in Bormio, who were rewarded with good placings. In just his fourth and fifth World Cup races, 26-year-old Kohler from the Bernese Oberland finished tenth in the downhill and 13th in the Super-G, which was his best result in this discipline. Monney also scored points twice, finishing 13th in the downhill and 20th in the Super-G.
Nicole Good takes Europa Cup form into the World Cup
Nicole Good, who celebrates her 26th birthday on New Year’s Day, finished in the top ten of the slalom in Lienz (Austria), making it her first top-ten finish in a World Cup race. The woman from east Switzerland seamlessly carried her form in the Europa Cup, which has seen her achieve three podium finishes, into the next level up in the World Cup. Her current skiing performances are just as good as her aggression on the slopes and her mental strength. “I’m really happy,” said Good at the finish line in Lienz. “My plan against the best in the world was to ski flat out in the second run. I’m very happy with this result.”
Conclusion: the Stöckli team ended the year with a near-perfect week and can now head into 2024 full of confidence.