Manuel Kramer takes the Gold in Idre

Race Report WC 8, Idre Fjäll - 16 March 2018

Friday morning, -17 degrees and the hardest wax that could be found. Pretty windy on the top, but straight from behind, so it shouldn't cause any problems. The first run was set to run already at 9 o'clock, the final run at 1030. The qualifying for the 9'th race was planned to run at 12 o'clock.

Yesterday (Thursday) three runs were held, two from Chicken and one from the top. However, for this year the top is much higher. The snow that normally forms a ramp behind the top start, is this year moved to the edge, so every top run now includes the added height of the ramp. This seems like a great recipe for added speed. The first two runs saw speeds between 140 and 150 km/h, and very smooth riding. The third run from the top was 20+ km/h faster and the track seemed a tad rougher.

The Thursday had seen a very strong Simone Origone leading both the second and the third run. This morning, Simone again lead the way, more than 1 km/h faster than Manuel Kramer. In the womens race Valentina Greggio was comfortably leading, but just behind this morning the Swedish racer Lisa Hovland-Uden had found a new boost and easily did her best performance so far this season, leaving both Britta Backlund and Celia Martinez behind.

1030 and the final run. Would Simone extend his short lead in the totals? The answer was no. Just when he needed it, Manuel Kramer at 176.93 km/h was faster by just 0.14 km/h taking the gold medal.

Bastien Montes placed third with a great run at 175.53 km/h. The Swedish rocket Sebastian Lindblom who won the Swedish championship just two days ago, managed to slip in just 0.08 km/h before the current World Record holder Ivan Origone. Sebastians final speed was 173.97 km/h. Lindblom might be new to S1, but he has a long line of speed ski accomplishments. The latest is being 2'nd in the World Championships here in Idre, last year in the standard production class.

Swiss racer Reto Eigenmann had a great day finishing in 6'th place with a speed of 173.17 km/h. Big improvement from yesterday.

Womens S1 saw Valentina Greggio increasing the lead in the finals. All speeds increased, and Lisa Hovland-Uden again did a really good run and took the second place with a margin.

The scare of the day was the crash of French racer Clea Martinez. She did a smooth and stable final run, when just at the end of the timing zone, she caught the edge of her left ski and began rotating left at 164 km/h. The crash was inevitable and Clea slided on her back to the very end of the breaking area ending up in the net. The race was stopped while she was tended to. She suffered bruising and burns.

One hour later, Clea was at the starting line for the qualifying for the next race. She ran an excellent 162 km/h. When asked about it, Clea just smiled, shrugged her shoulders and said "I just wanted to qualify for the next race". Toughness and courage in abundance!

Results for the race: /Results/2018/S1/World-Cup-Race-8-Idre