The ski crossers start the World Cup on Tuesday and Wednesday with qualifying for the competitions on Thursday and Friday in Val Thorens. Austria is represented by two female and seven male drivers in France, and for the ÖSV team around vice world champion Katrin Ofner it is also about determining their position.
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The preparation did not go as desired for the Styrian. “At first the snow conditions weren’t ideal, and when the conditions were right, I was out for a while due to illness. That’s why I don’t have too many snow days in my legs. But those would have been important because I was also traveling with new ski equipment,” explained Ofner.
In addition to the World Cup runner-up Bakuriani, the Upper Austrian Christina Födermayr is also taking part in Val Thorens. Sonja Gigler, however, is not yet fit for the competition. The Vorarlberg native is back on skis after tearing her cruciate ligament at the World Cup in February, but she won’t be taking part in the World Cup until the new year.
Rohrweck and Graf with different requirements
Among the men, Johannes Rohrweck and Mathias Graf return to France with good memories. Last year, Rohrweck won the first race and Graf won the second. The latter used the preparation to work on his starts, his technique when riding waves and his giant slalom swing. “This is also a very important component in ski cross. If I can implement my training achievements, the corresponding results will also appear,” says Graf optimistically.
GEPA/Daniel Goetzhaber Mathias Graf is confident that he will be able to give free rein to his joy again this year
The initial situation is different for Rohrweck, who fell badly after his victory in Val Thorens in Innichen and then had to struggle for a long time with a concussion and problems in the pelvic and adductor areas. “After missing much of last winter, I now need to get back into a racing mode. “I will approach it from trip to trip,” said the Upper Austrian.
GEPA/Daniel Goetzhaber There weren’t many moments like this for Johannes Rohrweck last winter
Johannes Aujesky, Tristan Takats, Adam Kappacher, Daniel Traxler and Robert Winkler will also be at the start of the eleven-station 2023/24 World Cup, which will also be hosted at the Reiteralm in February.