The finals of the Australia New Zealand Cup (ANC) were held at Canterbury’s Mt Hutt Ski Area last week (September 6-10) hosting over 20 nations and some of the world’s top ski racers.
The four-day race series is one of the biggest annual ski race in the Southern Hemisphere and included men’s and women’s Slalom, Super G and Giant Slalom, all held on Mt Hutt’s Red Bull Race Arena.
Mt Hutt Race and Events head of department Ian Mclean said the location of the races meant the “hugely impressive” speed and precision skiing of some highly-skilled athletes could be seen by spectators all over the mountain.
“The course was top notch, with lots of preparation taken place in the lead-up to the events and it made for a fast and exciting race series,” he said.
“The Swedish men’s alpine coaches Thomas Sjodin and Thomas Ericsson both believe that the conditions couldn’t have been better for the races and that Mt Hutt was perfect, giving it a real ten-out-of-ten!”
Some of the world’s top male and female ski racers from Great Britain, USA, Norway, Sweden, New Zealand, Korea, Slovakia, and Switzerland were all competing for the ANC title with the overall series winners gaining good starting positions in the 2011 World Cup beginning late October in Solden, Austria.
The Russian women dominated the women's field taking the top four places on the first days of racing with Elena Yakovishina taking first place in both the Super Combi in a time of 1.32.08min and Super G in a time of 57.96sec.
On Day Two of the women's events the Russians still dominated, but a great day from New Zealander Lucie Tait-Jamieson saw her in fourth place with a time of 1.01.23min.
In the competitive men's field, New Zealander Tim Cafe was impressive in the Super G coming in second with a time of 58.28sec, just .04sec behind first-placed Swede Johan Oehagen who took top honours with a time of 58.24sec.
The women's slalom proved the young talent of Emily Wright from Team Hutt who came home in sixth place with a two-run combined time total of 1.17.21min. Anna Sorokina of Russia took out first place with a time of 1.10.04min.
The overall ANC Cup winners were Tim Lindgren of Sweden and Greta Small of Australia