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Slalom slips away from Demschar

22 February 2018

ALPINE: In an unusual turn of events, more than half of the men’s Slalom field did not finish the challenging course at Yongpyeong Alpine Centre today.

Aussie Dominic Demschar was among the 54 athletes of the total 106 competitors who did not complete their first run.

Demschar, who placed 37th in the Giant Slalom last week, shot out of the start gate, but was almost too eager as he misjudged his opening speed and was stuck on the first gate.

“[My ski] hooked a little more aggressively than I was expecting to,” he said. “The edge grabbed and then I went on the wrong side of the gate.

“It’s happened to plenty of people before and it will happen to plenty more people after.”

Although he was disappointed his PyeongChang Games campaign had come to a premature end, the 24-year-old said that was nature of the sport.

“I’ve never done that [hooked the first gate] before so it’s never struck me as something that I might do.

“You don’t even think about [the first gate] when you push out, but it’s an obvious feeling when you go around the wrong side, it feels awkward and it happened and it was almost more disbelief than anything.

“Slalom happens, 64 turning gates, 64 chances to do what I did. I just chose the first gate to do it on.”

Slalom legend Austria’s Marcel Hirscher – who has already won Olympic gold in both the men’s Gant Slalom and Alpine Combined in PyeongChang – was another athlete to miss a gate in this morning’s run and rule themselves out of the second run.

With the reigning world champion and triple Olympian out of contention for the podium the gold medal is anyone’s shot.

Norway’s Henrik Fistoffersen was the fastest down the mountain in the first run in a time of 47.72. Andre Myhrer from Sweden was next (+.21) followed by France’s Victor Muffat-Jeandet currently in the bronze medal position (+.62).

Demschar has said his overall second Games has still been a really positive experience.

“I found this Games more enjoyable, maybe I’m a little more into what’s happening around me, I really liked it here,” he said.

The US based athlete now returns to his training base in Salt Lake City for a few days of rest before he wraps up the Nor Am finals in Kimberley (British Columbia) and rounds out the season in Europe.

Georgia Thompson

olympics.com.au

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