River Radamus appears to be picking up right where he left off at the FIS World Alpine Ski Championships in Cortina, Italy.
After finishing 11th worlds GS — a brilliant debut on one of the sport’s largest stages — last week, the Ski & Snowboard Club Vail racer took 14th in Saturday’s World Cup giant slalom in Bansko, Bulgaria.
This is why we don’t understand how worlds don’t count toward World Cup statistics — finishing 11th at worlds means a whole lot more than finishing three spots higher in 14th during a World Cup — but that’s a column for another day.
Croatia’s Filip Zubcic emerged victorious with France’s Mathieu Faivre and Austria’s Stefan Brennsteiner rounding out the podium.
Fourteenth place is a new career-best for Radamus in World Cup giant slalom. For the trivially-inclined, Radamus also finished 14th in a parallel event in Alta Badia, Italy, Dec. 23, 2019.
“Yew! fun one out there today!,” Radamus wrote on Instagram. “Psyched with the top 15, and we get another go tomorrow.”
Radamus is correct. More GS is on tap on Sunday in Bansko, and it’s another opportunity for Edwards resident to keep his successful season rolling.
The biggest thing Radamus, who turned 23 earlier this month; belated happy returns,kid, has done this year is a huge step for any up-and-coming racer — achieving consistency.
With the exception of a bad weekend in Santa Catarina, Italy, in early December — two DNFs and everyone is entitled to a small bad stretch — Radamus has been a regular in punching in good GS results during the 2020-21 season.
Radamus got his first GS start here at Birds of Prey in 2017 and didn’t make the flip. That was the first of his 16 starts on tour before the current season. Radamus was 1-for 16 in making the second run and finishing in the points (top 30) in those races.
He’s 5-for-7 this year or 6-for-8, if one counts worlds. Something has clicked. While one never wants to incur the wrath of the Alpine gods, Radamus is not only keeping his spot on the team, but likely earning more opportunities next year.
Two giant slaloms remain during the World Cup regular season — Sunday’s event in Bansko and Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, on March 13. Radamus’ task in these two racers is to move up in the GS World Cup standings.
Only the top 25 in the points of a discipline qualify for the World Cup finals in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, and Radamus is in 26th after Saturday’s race. Radamus (57) is 8 points behind Austria’ Manny Feller for 25th, so with a total of 200 points up for grabs in these comps, Radamus essentially controls his destiny with regard to making finals.