Adelboden (Switzerland) (AFP)
Sparkling on the perilous track of Adelboden, Alexis Pinturault chained a second victory on Saturday as a giant, widening the gap in the race to the big globe over Aleksander Aamodt Kilde, however excellent.
Second fastest time of the first round behind the Swiss Loïc Meillard, after a small fault on the top of the Chuesnisbärgli, the Savoyard proved untouchable in the second to clinch his 33rd World Cup victory.
In total, he relegated the Croatian Filip Zubcic at 1 sec 26 and the young Swiss Marco Odermatt at 1 sec 65, the same podium as the day before with even greater gaps.
This is the third double in the Savoyard's career on the same track, after his double success as a giant at Hinterstoder in February 2016, then a combined / giant sequence in March 2020 still in the Austrian resort.
After a start to the season in too warm an air to harden the snow, conditions that he hardly appreciates, he was delighted to return to an icy and "magnificently prepared" slope, which "deteriorates very little".
- Very solid Kilde -
The Courchevel skier, who already won in Adelboden in 2017, enjoyed this one of the most technical route of the season, all in ground movements, variations in pace and slope, before the terrifying final wall.
This 60% slope also caused the American Tommy Ford to fall heavily during the first round.
Hit in the head, the 31-year-old skier had to be evacuated by helicopter after twenty minutes of treatment.
Overall, the Courchevel skier is now 115 points ahead of the Norwegian defending champion Aleksander Aamodt Kilde, more of a speed specialist, but who leaves the Dutch resort with a very good fourth place on Friday and a fifth on Saturday.
"Pintu" will have another opportunity to widen the gap Sunday in the slalom in which Kilde does not participate, before the two runs for Wengen next week where the Norwegian will line up.
The Chuesnisbärgli slalom, won last year by Swiss driver Daniel Yule, will especially see the specialists of tight poles compete in finally wintry conditions, after three races on soft snow which have shaken up the hierarchy.
- Christmas "thoroughly" Sunday -
The French Clément Noël, who had grazed the small globe of the slalom last season, thus points to ninth place in the classification of the specialty, after leaving the track at Alta Badia, a fifth place at Madonna di Campiglio and a seventh place on Wednesday in Zagreb despite a great first round.
In the Swiss resort, "the profile is extremely varied: there is an average slope at the beginning, with land movements, then flat, a really steep wall, and finally a part where you can let go of the skis a little on the bottom, ”describes the 23-year-old Vosges.
Second two years ago, released last year in the final wall while he was playing for victory, he believes that it is necessary to approach the Chuesnisbärgli "by going thoroughly but by being intelligent on key passages".
Favorite for the big globe but discreet in the first part of the season, including over the giants of Adelboden where he was ninth Friday and then 27th Saturday, the Norwegian Henrik Kristoffersen will also be able to shine on this selective route.
He will then have five slaloms left in the month of January alone, so many opportunities to pick up again in the general classification where he is currently 304 points behind Pinturault.
© 2021 AFP