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  • Writer's pictureZuzana Deptová

WORLD CUP and GRAND PRIX SLOVAKIA


In the past, the Slovak Grand Prix was the most important race in downhill skiing in the former Czechoslovakia. Its history began to be written in 1955.


After several years of effort and successful years with international participation, the organizers managed to push for the inclusion of VCS in the World Cup races. And so we were able to welcome the absolute top of the world downhill skiing several times in the High Tatras at Skalnaty Pleso and Hrebienk.



1974 WORLD CUP FINALS


The most famous chapter of the Grand Prix of Slovakia was undoubtedly its nineteenth year in 1974, when the World Cup Final of the 1973/74 season was held in the High Tatras.


On March 7 - 10, 1974, the attention of the entire skiing world was focused on the High Tatras in Czechoslovakia. The complete world top men and women competed here. About 15,000 spectators watched the slalom at the slope in Hrebienok. Most of the spectators walked to watch the giant slalom races at Skalnate Pleso by foot, due to the small capacity of the old cable car. The course was excellently prepared, even if it softened on a warm sunny day, so only one run was completed, which until then was allowed by the FIS rules to finish races.


For the first time there was a live television broadcast from Skalnaté Pleso, which was preceded by special technical preparation. Parts of commentary booths for both czechoslovak and foreign TV crews were taken to Skalnaté Pleso by helicopter.


Ingemar Stenmark, who took 2nd place in the slalom and giant slalom, as well as in the alpine combined at the Grand Prix Slovakia, said: "It was the final as it should be."


Serge Lange, chairman and founder of SP, also commented: "I am pleasantly surprised by the wonderful atmosphere and the huge crowd of spectators."


The Grand Prix of Slovakia also had an extremely good response in the press, on radio and television.


The winners of the Grand Prix of Slovakia were the Italian Pietro Gross and Hany Wenzel from Liechtenstein. In the 1973/74 season, Anne-Marie Moser-Proll (AUT) won the Crystal Globes for the best skiers in the world for the fourth time, and for the first time only nineteen-year-old Pietro Gross, who broke the three-year winning streak of his team mate Gustav Thoeni.


Taken from the publication "60 years of the Grand Prix Slovakia", 2015.





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