Dave Ryding came agonisingly close to recording Britian’s first FIS World Cup Race win today at Levi in the first slalom of the season.
After a blistering first run the Lancashire slalom expert found himself in first place ahead of the world’s best, but it was tight. Felix Neureuther was only +0.14 behind and Henrik Kristofferson only another 0.04 behind the German. A relatively open set on the first run, courtesy of Italian Coach Daneile Simoncelli, saw the second run start list stacked and it was anyone’s game. The cut off for a second run was only 1.56seconds behind the Rocket.
Unfortunately there was to be no second run for young Laurie Taylor after failing to finish the first run. However, it will have been valuable experience which will only aid the development of his career for sure.
Onto the second run, Neureuther was sitting in first place after a solid display, it was all down to Ryding. The Rocket set out of the start gate with one goal only… Attack. If you want to win a World Cup Race you cannot hold back. Dave was charging through the top gates with his characteristic drive. Having built on his lead over Felix, he was 0.32 up, the run was looking extremely promising. It was safe to say the occasion certainly wasn’t getting the better of Ryding. Having no problems with the awkward set over the rollers, where many before had dumped speed, Dave was on fire. Through the second split with over half a second advantage over the Worlds best. We started to believe today was the day, over the pitch with no mistakes. His second run was making his first run look average, making the rest of the world… look average.
Then disaster struck. One gate marginally too tight on the line, the skis broke away ultimately ending Ryding’s challenge… Watching from home after an initial groan the room fell silent. Lost for words. Perhaps the title of this blog might have been better with “Heart Break for British Ski Racing”, but no one can imagine how Dave must have felt when he got back on his feet and realised how close he was from glory. Today’s top 3, Neureuther, Kristofferson, Hargin rushed over to console Ryding.
Ski Racing is a brutal sport and today was a prime example of that. From a potential 100 WC points, a pet Reindeer and a cheque for 45’000CHf, to nothing… But what Dave will take from today is confidence. If Kitzbühel wasn’t enough, today Dave showed he is a real force to be reckoned with a contender for the top spot on the World stage. Dave will dust himself off and be back working his rocks off to improve and go again on the 10th of December at Val d’Isere (FRA).
With such a performance, British Ski Racing fans can most certainly look forward to watching Rocket Ryding this winter and the dream of a British win in the Alpine Skiing World Cup is edging closer.
Don’t forget to grab your Official Dave Ryding Fan Club gear quick as it is flying out. Click the link below to get your T-Shirt, cap or beanie! Uk & International Shipping is available.
Levi FIS Alpine World Cup 12.11.2017/18 Run 1:
Levi FIS Alpine World Cup 12.11.2017 Run 2: