Three alpine skiers will look to go two-for-two on Sunday (9 March), as the men’s super-G will set off down the slopes across all classes in the Sochi 2014 Winter Paralympics at the Rosa Khutor Alpine Centre beginning at 10:00 (MSK). …Â
Austrian standing skier Markus Salcher, Spanish visually impaired skier Jon Santacana Maiztegui and Japanese sit-skier Akira Kano all won gold in downhill in their respective classes on Saturday (8 March) and will be looking to repeat those performances in the super-G.
In the men’s super-G standing category Salcher won the downhill with a time of 1:24.35, giving him even more confidence for Sunday’s super-G – an event he is the reigning world champion in.
As if the 22-year-old needed more confidence in either the downhill or the super-G.
Salcher, who was born with the right side of his body paralysed, finished atop the world rankings in the super-G as well as the downhill last season.
“The time was longer than in my second training,” Salcher said of his gold-medal downhill run.
Salcher won the super-G at the 2013 World Championships in La Molina, Spain ahead of former World Cup able-bodied skier Matthias Lanzinger of Austria, as well as Switzerland’s Michael Bruegger. The Salcher-Lanzinger Austrian rivalry is expected to be played out in full in the super-G.
France’s Vincent Gauthier-Manuel will also be a force to be reckoned with in the super-G after he finished third in Saturday’s downhill in 1:25.30. Gauthier-Manuel won silver in the super-G at the Vancouver 2010 Paralympics.
Guided by Miguel Galindo Garces, Santacana Maiztegui won the downhill on Saturday with a time of 1:21.76 after being sidelined for six months with an Achilles tendon injury.
In order to make his celebration twice as nice, however, the Spaniard will have to outclass three-time Paralympic champion Jakub Krako of Slovakia.
The 23-year-old is on a mission to end his medal drought. Krako parted ways with his guide of 10 years, Juraj Medera, after winning silver in the super-G at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Paralympics. But in 2013 he finished 10th in the super-G at the last World Championships.
In the sitting class, Kano will be competing fresh off a victory in the downhill and eager to defend his super-G Paralympic title. The race will also feature Kano’s teammate Taiki Morii, who is the reigning world champion in the event and won super-G bronze at Vancouver 2010.