100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games 2011 reports:
Slalom world number three Veronika Zuzulova continued her winning form at the 100% Pure Winter Games at Coronet Peak today the Australia New Zealand Continental Cup slalom title while American Will Brandenburg put on a blistering second run performance to stamp his name on the men’s trophy.
The race on the Rocky Gully Race Arena was a testing World Cup class course, affected at times by strong, gusty winds.
Chief of Race Richard Murphy says the race was particularly difficult for the women with only 16 of the 34 starters going through to the second run.
“The race was a true test of mental strength in skiing,” he says. “But the course was in great condition and held up well. We had very firm injected snow, definitely of World Cup standard, and the preparation of the piste was excellent. The men’s field was serious quality, probably one of the best seen in New Zealand for many years.”
He says the exposure for the Winter Games NZ and Coronet Peak, particularly in North America and Europe, due to the calibre of the alpine races, has been outstanding.
Zuzulova was in a class of her own on the 52 gate course attracting a large crowd of spectators to watch her and the other top seeds in action. She was fastest in the first run by almost three seconds in 46.64 but was pipped in the second by silver medallist Kristine Gjeitsen Haugen, who celebrated her 19th birthday by taking the run in 43.76, just a few splits ahead of Zuzulova who recorded 43.94.
Zuzulova clocked a combined time of 1.30.58 to take the title adding it to her giant slalom title won at Coronet Peak yesterday.
“The World Cup course was good for me today but it was difficult for some of the others who don’t ski at this level. I am very happy to win today and really enjoy racing at Coronet Peak.”