28 December 2018

Ryding, Musgrave charge towards 2019

The final World Cups of the year are about to take place and it is the established names of British snowsport who are leading the way heading towards 2019.

Dave Ryding pulled off one of the best performances of his career just before Christmas and has earned a place in the new year race in Oslo, while fellow three-time Olympian Andrew Musgrave is one of three GB Cross Country skiers about to embark on the Tour de Ski.

All this just a week after Charlotte Bankes capped her first snowboard cross World Cups for Great Britain with two top six performances including a podium at Cervinia, Italy. 

Alpine World Cups – Saturday 22 December to Tuesday 1 January

Dave Ryding was always going to approach Oslo’s New Year’s Day race with confidence as the city event format has brought him some of his best-ever World Cup results.

Other than historic second place at Kitzbuhel in January 2017, Ryding’s next best World Cup results were a pair of fourth-place finishes in the city events at Stockholm (Jan 2017) and last year’s new year’s day race in Oslo where he knocked out Marcel Hirscher in the quarter-finals.

Those results were matched last Saturday when Ryding was fourth in the final pre-Christmas World Cup slalom at Madonna di Campiglio, Italy. Following a first run which saw Ryding just scrape into the top 30, the 32-year-old capitalised on starting early by sending down the fastest second run to finish just 0.15sec off the podium.

The result was by far Ryding’s best since changing equipment this season and will certainly have him in the right frame of mind going into a format which has suited him in the past.

Meanwhile, Alex Tilley competed in today’s World Cup giant slalom at Semmering, Austria but was 0.37sec off qualifying for a second run, finishing 37th.

** The City Event will be broadcast on Eurosport 1 from 7pm GMT on new year’s day.

Cross Country Tour de Ski – Saturday 29 December to Sunday 6 January

One of the cross country World Cup’s iconic events kicks off tomorrow when the 13th Tour de Ski begins in Toblach, Italy.

Andrew Musgrave, Andrew Young and James Clugnet will all start Saturday’s first sprint stage and if they finish the Tour they’ll clock near 81km across three countries, featuring seven stages over nine days.

While Clugnet earned his first World Cup top 30 result in his last start and Young has reached the World Cup podium in the sprint, the format is just as important for overall contender Musgrave with bonus seconds on offer during each stage.

Tomorrow’s sprint will be followed by a 15km free stage on Sunday before a travel day as the Tour moves to Val Müstair, Switzerland for another sprint stage on Tuesday. The Tour then moves on to Obertsdorf, Germany for a 15km classic mass start on Wednesday and a 15km free pursuit on Thursday. Another day off follows while the athletes move on to Val di Fiemme, Italy for Saturday’s 15km classic mass start before the traditional 9km final climb on Sunday.

Musgrave is the leading British hope in this year’s race following three top 20 results in the past four year’s including his best-ever finish – 15th – in last season’s race.

** All stages of the Tour de Ski will be broadcast on Eurosport and the Eurosport Player. Check https://gb.eurosportplayer.com/schedule/ for the various viewing times across the event.


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