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ISMF World Cup: Sarah Dreier takes the win on home soil

ISMF World Cup
Sarah Dreier - Vertical race -Schladming (ISMF World Cup)

Schladming – The second discipline of the WÜRTH MODYF ISMF World Cup stage in Schladming was the Vertical race, and what a fantastic show it was. The course was 2.2 km long with more than 600 metres of elevation, hard but also in perfect conditions for the athletes to deliver great performances.

Hundreds of spectators cheered on the elite ski mountaineering athletes along the track in the sunny and warm weather. It was the best race of the season in terms of atmosphere.

 

Bonnet, in a league of his own
The men’s category kicked off the race at 11:15 CET. In the first hundreds of meters, four athletes were in the front. After four minutes, the main favourite, Rémi Bonnet, attacked on the only flat -and short- section of the course. From this point, it was a demonstration of his power. He had enough time to celebrate with the crowd and enjoy the feeling of his fifth World Cup triumph of the season.

“It was a hot day, so being in the red zone from the start wasn’t a good idea. The shape is good, legs were reacting, so I was able to make a difference and won this tough and steep race,” said Bonnet, the winner of all Vertical races this season and reigning double World Champion.

Second in the finish was -for the fourth time this season in Vertical (World Cups and World Championships)- Maximilien Drion du Chapois of Belgium. He had to fight for the silver spot with the third, Werner Marti of Switzerland. Home crowds saw the fantastic effort by home athlete Paul Verbnjak, still U23, who finished fourth. The Top 5 was closed by Federico Nicolini of Italy.

Dreier put an end to Gachet-Mollaret’s winning streak
The women’s race was an exciting spectacle. Austrian duo Sarah Dreier and Johanna Hiemer started fast, only followed by the super-star of the Vertical races, Axelle Gachet-Mollaret. After the first steep ramp, Dreier and Gachet-Nollaret went together, shoulder by shoulder for most of the race.

Dreier waited for the last section, and a brave effort cheered by hundreds of spectators was enough to give her a few meters of distance with Gachet-Mollaret. Enough for the Austrian athlete to win the first race of her career and right at home:

“It’s unbelievable, I’m speechless. Thank you to everyone who supports me, to the local committee. It’s a dream that comes true, and it feels so good to win at home in front of my family, friends and Austrian people,” said Sarah Dreier, the home hero of the weekend. Gachet-Mollaret outsprinted her compatriot Emily Harrop to secure second place.
Alba De Silvestro of Italy was the fourth to cross the finish line, while Marcela Vašínová of the Czech republic closed the Top 5.

A month’s break is ahead of us before the World Cup Final in Tromso, Norway. Four races remain, but only three will count towards the World Cup standings – Sprint, Individual and Vertical.