Saturday really was a day to write off! The first thing you feel is, of course, disappointment. But I’ve been in this business long enough to know that there is no point wallowing in it. That’s why the first step after such a race is always to analyse the details. I usually get together with my team right after the race to do this and in the case of the Giant Slalom, we go though both runs from start to finish, in order to identify the problems and mistakes and then to find solutions to them. This objective approach helps me sort out my emotions, not only after a good race, but all the more so after a disappointing result. I try to put it into perspective and then put it behind me, so I can then concentrate on the next challenge.
For the Giant Slalom, too, I was not able to put in the important 1.5 months of training for the World Cup. The race in Killington (USA) was the first test under competitive conditions after my injury – and it was there that I noticed that I could not attack 100% and that I was mentally inhibited. In Sestriere (ITA) I wanted to give it all this weekend, but I already felt on the first run that I was not back at full power! It was too tame, too round, and there was no real acceleration. Of course, I was upset with my time of 1:10.01! But I got a feeling for the snow and then wanted to take it to the edge on the second run.
Anyone who knows me, knows that in the past my second runs were often the better runs. That is why I wanted to attack this time on the second run. But my head just wouldn’t go with the flow – on the upper section I didn’t ski quite as fast as I wanted to. Coming out of the steep slope, I didn’t manage to keep up the full speed. Some of the gates went well, but overall I didn’t ski aggressively enough and had too little self-confidence. The result was that my technique and my timing were no longer coordinated. The time of 1:10.28 was again a time I was not satisfied with!
In the case of the Giant Slalom, in particular, it is extremely important that you find your rhythm, because otherwise the flow is missing – a flow that is necessary is you want to ski top times. I know, however, that I am going to ski these times again in the Giant Slalom. I have the experience and I am sure that the feeling will be back, along with my fighting spirit. I am going to work hard to get this back, my next training sessions are going to be on particularly difficult terrain, and I am going to regain more and more confidence with every race I ski.