Dave Ryding backed up his tremendous result in the opening World Cup Slalom with two solid performances in the opening two Europa Cup Slaloms down the same hill in Levi. Â Ryding spent the two weeks between the two events training and getting ready up in northern Finland yet knew that he had to put in two solid performances to keep hold of his top 15 ranking in the Europa Cup. A 14th in the opening race was backed up with 15th in the second.
After the races, Ryding saidÂ “its always important to get some points on the board early in Europa Cup as the points from last year are gone after the first 2 races. So if you have a shocker its back to starting out of the top 30, which as I’m sure you can tell makes a huge difference, especially with the races before christmas.”
With this added pressure and the fact that he had done so well in the World Cup race, Ryding knew things would be tough: “The first race I found it hard to get this thought out of my head and I was unable to really charge down the course like I know I can, as I did the world cup. So with some fairly average skiing I managed 14th, solid but I felt I could do much more.”
The old adage that every day is a new race comes to mind and for the second race he “felt a bit more relaxed and my skiing reflected that until I made a pretty huge mistake on the pitch, but thankfully I slammed on and made the top 30. A better 2nd run moved me up to 15th so another respectable, however slightly frustrating again as I didn’t show what Im capable of.”
The end of result of the two races sees him now in 16th on the Europa Cup Start List. What does he feel about this? “Not ideal as I’m out the top 15 but some reasonable points on the board and hopefully I can get it going again come the next ones!”
Ryding now heads back to central Europa and will be racing in Davos at some FIS races before heading to a series of Europa Cup and World Cup races inÂ Val d’isere (WC), Obereggen (EC), Pozza (EC), San Vagil (EC), Madonna (WC) and Â Zuoz before going home for a well earned rest.