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Alexis Pinturault, seconds before his crash in Wengen

Photo: Shin Tanaka / AP

The Super-G at the Alpine Ski World Cup in Wengen was overshadowed by the crash of the French veteran Alexis Pinturault. The 32-year-old had been treated for a long time at the track and then flown away by a helicopter. Most recently, the serious crashes of Marco Schwarz and Christof Innerhofer had already necessitated helicopter missions.

As the French Ski Federation announced in the evening, the two-time combined world champion suffered a tear of the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. Screams of pain could be heard on television from Pinturault, who had become the father of a young daughter only a few days ago. "It's hard to be happy after my run when something like this happens to a friend," Pinturault's compatriot and winner Cyprien Sarrazin told ZDF.

Sarrazin won ahead of Swiss local hero and favourite Marco Odermatt (+0.58 seconds) and Aleksander Aamodt Kilde from Norway (+1.00). However, the performance of the Germans bordered on an embarrassment: As the best DSV athlete, Andres Sander only came in 25th place on Friday. He was a good three seconds behind Sarrazin. In a speed event – i.e. downhill or super-G – the German men have not been placed so far back since December 2018; at that time, Beaver Creek had only achieved a 30th place.

Dreßen takes it easy, the rest disappoints

For the other German ski racers, too, hardly anything is coming together at the moment. In addition to Sander, Simon Jocher finished in the points in 29th (+3.18), Romed Baumann disappointed in 37th place (+3.82). Josef Ferstl and Luis Vogt were eliminated. Former Kitzbühel winner Thomas Dreßen decided not to start in order to save himself for the traditional Lauberhorn downhill on Saturday (12.30 p.m./ZDF and Eurosport).

The German slippers this winter are surprising in that Baumann and Sander had each raced onto World Cup podiums at the end of last season. At the moment, however, the DSV athletes lack aggressiveness, as the coaches complain.