Ice World Cup, Final at Kirov
The fifth and final stage of the Ice World Cup 2001 starts today at Kirov, Russia
|Ice World Cup 2001, last act. The fifth and final stage of the highly fought over Ice World Cup 2001 starts today in Kirov, Russia. |
The outcome of this conclusive stage is as uncertain as never before, not only because of the one-month long break, but also because of the envisaged head-to-head between the provisional leaders.
The Women's event in particular should prove to be interesting, as the leading Ines Papert and Liv Sansoz battle it out for first place. Liv Sansoz won the sport climbing World Cup 2000 and, new to this discipline, immediately demonstrated her ability by winning at Pitzal, Val di Daone and Chamonix.
But the Frenchwoman failed to qualify from the Open at Saas Fee and consequently trails 40 points behind the German, who has one victory and three 2nd places to her name. Kirov holds the answer, but winning the "Grand Slam" will not prove to be easy for Sansoz. Outsiders for victory and possible third place are StÃ©phanie Maureau, Kirsten Buchmann and Nadezhda Yakimova, third fourth and fifth respectively.
Nothing has been decided yet in the Men's event either. The French domination is bound to continue, with Stephane Husson, Daniel Dulac and Anthony Lamiche leading the provisional ranking. 40 points are all that separate the first two - Husson won both in Chamonix and Val di Daone, while Dulac won early on in Pitztal. But who will be on form now?
Notable for his absence is the Italian Mauro 'Bubu' Bole, who chose not to embark on the long journey to Kirov.
Good luck to all!