Tyler Walker wins trophy at 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Cup Finals
Russia won the nations trophy at the 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Cup Finals in Sochi, Russia, on Monday — a clear sign of their strength going into the Paralympic Winter Games next year.
The United States, which claimed the trophy in 2012, did not place in the top three. The Russians finished with 4,885 points, and their nearest rival was Austria, finishing with 3,725 points. France finished in third place with 3,454 points.
Monday's super combined event was cancelled due to rainy weather conditions, which meant that the trophy for the speed events was given out based on the downhill results.
Trophies were also awarded for the overall winner in each category, with Russia dominating the women's visually impaired and men's standing classes.
Women's visually impaired
Russia's Alexandra Frantseva (guide Pavel Zabotin) won the women's visually impaired speed event trophy with 180 points. Great Britain's Jade Etherington (guide John Clark) was second on 130 points and USA's Danelle Umstead (guide Rob Umstead) was close behind with 100.
Frantseva also won the overall women's visually impaired trophy with 1,080 points. Her nearest rival, Slovakia's Henrieta Farkasova (guide Nataly Subrtova) had 660 points before getting injured a few weeks ago at the 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships La Molina. Australia's Melissa Perrine (guide Andrew Bor) was in third place with 365 points.
France's Vincent Gauthier-Manuel won the men's standing speed event trophy with the maximum 200 points. Russia's Alexey Bugaev was second with 140 points, with Austria's Matthias Lanzinger close behind with 130.
The 16-year-old Bugaev took the men's standing trophy with 940 points. Lanzinger had to contend with second place on 800 points and Gauthier-Manuel was third with 715 points.
German women also swept the field, with Andrea Rothfuss and Ana Schaffelhuber taking home multiple trophies.
Rothfuss and France's Marie Bochet had joint-first place in the women's standing speed events. Both had 180 points after taking a gold and silver each in the downhill. Russia's Inga Medvedeva and USA's Allison Jones had joint-third place with 110 points.
Rothfuss also won the overall women's standing trophy with 926 points. France's Marie Bochet, five-time World Champion this year, was not far behind with 880 points. USA's Allison Jones was third with 715.
"I won four World Cup trophies. The performances in the races itself was not good, but all in all it was good," said Rothfuss.
Schaffelhuber dominated the women's sitting speed events, taking the trophy with 200 points. Austria's Claudia Loesch was second with 80 points and USA's Alana Nichols third with 60 points.
Schaffelhuber also stormed to victory to take the overall women's sitting trophy with 1,080 points. Austria's Claudia Loesch was in second place with 880 points and USA's Laurie Stephens third with 590.
"I think it was a good season. In speed it was really good - I really improved and I'm really looking forward to Sochi now," said Schaffelhuber. "I need to improve some technical things, but my new mono-ski is much better, so I'm really happy."
Men's visually impaired
Spain's Jon Santacana (guide Miguel Galindo Garces) took home the men's visually impaired speed event trophy after winning both downhill runs. Italy's Alessandro Daldoss (guide Maros Hudik) was second with 130 points and Canada's Chris Williamson (guide Robin Femy) third on 110.
Santacana also had a comfortable lead to take the men's visually impaired trophy with 820 points. Slovakia's Jakub Krako (guide Martin Motyka) was in second place with 653 points, followed closely by Frantseva's brother, Ivan Frantsev of Russia, (guide German Arganovskii) who had 646 points.
"The high points of this season have been the three medals in the World Championships and the overall in the World Cup, because it's very difficult," said Santacana, who also won it last season.
USA's Tyler Walker took home the men's sitting speed event trophy with 145 points. France's Yohann Tablerlet was very close behind with 140 points and USA's Christopher Devlin-Young was in third place on 100.
The men's sitting overall trophy was won by Japan's Takeshi Suzuki who finished on 766 points. His teammate Taiki Morii was in second place with 573 points and Germany's Thomas Nolte was just behind with 544.
"This year has gone really well for me," said Suzuki. "The men's sitting class is really difficult. All the athletes are very close together in times, so it's really fun to compete."
For full rankings, please visit the IPC Alpine Skiing rankings page at http://www.paralympic.org/AlpineSkiing/Rankings.