Giant slalom

  (Redirected from Giant Slalom skiing)

Giant slalom (GS) is an alpine skiing and alpine snowboarding discipline. It involves skiing between sets of poles (gates) spaced at a greater distance from each other than in slalom but less than in Super-G.

A skier attacks a gate in GS

Giant slalom and slalom make up the technical events in alpine ski racing. This category separates them from the speed events of Super-G and downhill. The technical events are normally composed of two runs, held on different courses on the same ski run.


The vertical drop for a GS course must be 250–450 m (820–1,480 ft) for men, and 250–400 m (820–1,310 ft) for women. The number of gates in this event is 56–70 for men and 46–58 for women. The number of direction changes in a GS course equals 11–15% of the vertical drop of the course in metres, 13–18% for children. As an example, a course with a vertical drop of 300 m (984 ft) would have 33–45 direction changes for an adult race.[1]


Olympian Lotte Smiseth Sejersted
in a GS race

Although giant slalom is not the fastest event in skiing, on average a well-trained racer may reach average speeds of 40 km/h (25 mph).


Top: giant slalom skis from 2006,
bottom: slalom skis.

Giant slalom skis are shorter than super-G and downhill skis, and longer than slalom skis.

In an attempt to increase safety for the 2003–04 season, the International Ski Federation (FIS) increased the minimum sidecut radius for giant slalom skis to 21 m (69 ft) and for the first time imposed minimum ski lengths for GS: 185 cm (72.8 in) for men and 180 cm (70.9 in) for women. A maximum stand height (the distance from the snow to the sole of the boot) of 55 mm (2.17 in) was also established for all disciplines.

In May 2006, the FIS announced further changes to the rules governing equipment. Beginning with the 2007–08 season, the minimum radius for GS skis was increased to 27 m (89 ft) for men and 23 m (75 ft) for women. Additionally, the minimum ski width at the waist was increased from 60 to 65 mm (2.36 to 2.56 in), and the maximum stand height for all disciplines was reduced to 50 mm (1.97 in).[1] The best skiers tended to use a bigger sidecut radius, like Ted Ligety at 29 m (95 ft), and Lindsey Vonn at 27 m (89 ft).

For the 2012–13 season, the FIS increased the sidecut radius to 35 m (115 ft) and the minimal length to 195 cm (76.8 in). Many athletes criticized this decision. Often David Dodge was cited. Dodge argues that FIS used studies which do not represent a scientific proof. He states that it is well known that if one tips the ski 7° more the 35 m ski will have the same turning radius as the 28 m ski. He states as well that knee injuries are decreasing since the 1990s, when carving skis started to be used.[2][3][4][5][6]


The first giant slalom was set in 1935 on the Mottarone in Italy, over the Lake Maggiore, near Stresa, on January 20.[7] After one month, the second giant slalom was set on the Marmolada in Italy's Dolomite mountains, by Guenther Langes.[8]

The giant slalom was added to the world championships in 1950 at Aspen, Colorado, and debuted at the Winter Olympics in 1952 at Oslo, Norway, run at Norefjell. The GS has been run in every world championships and Olympics since. Originally a one-run event, a second run was added for men at the world championships in 1966, run on consecutive days, and at the Olympics in 1968. The second run for women was added at the world championships in 1978, and made its Olympic debut in 1980.

The world championships changed to a one-day format for the giant slalom in 1974, but the Olympics continued the GS as a two-day event through 1980. Also scheduled for two days in 1984, both giant slaloms became one-day events after repeated postponements of the downhills. Following the extra races added to the program in 1988, the GS has been scheduled as a one-day event at the Olympics.

Upon its introduction, giant slalom briefly displaced the combined event at the world championships; it was absent in 1950 and 1952. The combined returned in 1954 in Åre, Sweden, but as a "paper race," using the results of the three events (downhill, giant slalom, and slalom), a format used through 1980. The combined returned as a stand-alone event at the world championships in 1982 at Schladming, Austria, and at the 1988 Calgary Olympics. It was changed to the super-combined format (one run of slalom on same day as downhill) at the world championships in 2007 and the Olympics in 2010.

Men's World Cup podiumsEdit

In the following table men's giant slalom World Cup podiums from the World Cup first edition in 1967.[9]

Season 1st 2nd 3rd
1967   Jean-Claude Killy   Georges Mauduit   Jimmy Heuga
1968   Jean-Claude Killy   Edmund Bruggmann   Herbert Huber
1969   Karl Schranz   Reinhard Tritscher   Jean-Noel Augert
1970   Gustav Thöni   Patrick Russel
  Dumeng Giovanoli
1971   Gustav Thöni
  Patrick Russel
  Edmund Bruggmann
1972   Gustav Thöni   Edmund Bruggmann   Rogers Rossat-Mignod
1973   Hans Hinterseer   Erik Haker   Adolf Rösti
1974   Piero Gros   Hans Hinterseer   Gustav Thöni
1975   Ingemar Stenmark   Piero Gros   Erik Haker
1976   Ingemar Stenmark   Gustav Thöni   Piero Gros
1977   Ingemar Stenmark
  Heini Hemmi
  Klaus Heidegger
1978   Ingemar Stenmark   Andreas Wenzel   Phil Mahre
1979   Ingemar Stenmark   Peter Lüscher   Bojan Krizaj
1980   Ingemar Stenmark   Hans Enn   Jacques Lüthy
1981   Ingemar Stenmark   Alexander Zhirov   Phil Mahre
1982   Phil Mahre   Ingemar Stenmark   Marc Girardelli
1983   Phil Mahre   Ingemar Stenmark
  Max Julen
1984   Ingemar Stenmark
  Pirmin Zurbriggen
  Hans Enn
1985   Marc Girardelli   Pirmin Zurbriggen   Thomas Bürgler
1986   Joel Gaspoz   Ingemar Stenmark   Hubert Strolz
1987   Pirmin Zurbriggen
  Joel Gaspoz
  Richard Pramotton
1988   Alberto Tomba   Hubert Strolz   Helmut Mayer
1989   Ole-Christian Furuseth
  Pirmin Zurbriggen
  Rudolf Nierlich
1990   Günther Mader
  Ole-Christian Furuseth
  Hubert Strolz
1991   Alberto Tomba   Rudolf Nierlich   Marc Girardelli
1992   Alberto Tomba   Hans Pieren   Paul Accola
1993   Kjetil-Andre Aamodt   Alberto Tomba   Marc Girardelli
1994   Christian Mayer   Kjetil-Andre Aamodt   Franck Piccard
1995   Alberto Tomba   Jure Kosir   Harald Strand Nilsen
1996   Michael von Grünigen   Urs Kälin   Lasse Kjus
1997   Michael von Grünigen   Kjetil-Andre Aamodt   Hans Knauß
1998   Hermann Maier   Michael von Grünigen   Christian Mayer
1999   Michael von Grünigen   Stephan Eberharter   Hermann Maier
2000   Hermann Maier   Christian Mayer   Michael von Grünigen
2001   Hermann Maier   Michael von Grünigen   Erik Schlopy
2002   Frederic Covili   Benjamin Raich   Stephan Eberharter
2003   Michael von Grünigen   Bode Miller   Hans Knauß
2004   Bode Miller   Kalle Palander   Massimiliano Blardone
2005   Benjamin Raich   Bode Miller   Thomas Grandi
2006   Benjamin Raich   Massimiliano Blardone   Fredrik Nyberg
2007   Aksel Lund Svindal   Massimiliano Blardone   Benjamin Raich
2008   Ted Ligety   Benjamin Raich   Manfred Mölgg
2009   Didier Cuche   Benjamin Raich   Ted Ligety
2010   Ted Ligety   Carlo Janka   Benjamin Raich
2011   Ted Ligety   Aksel Lund Svindal   Cyprien Richard
2012   Marcel Hirscher   Ted Ligety   Massimiliano Blardone
2013   Ted Ligety   Marcel Hirscher   Alexis Pinturault
2014   Ted Ligety   Marcel Hirscher   Alexis Pinturault
2015   Marcel Hirscher   Alexis Pinturault   Ted Ligety
2016   Marcel Hirscher   Alexis Pinturault   Henrik Kristoffersen
2017   Marcel Hirscher   Mathieu Faivre   Alexis Pinturault
2018   Marcel Hirscher   Henrik Kristoffersen   Alexis Pinturault
2019   Marcel Hirscher   Henrik Kristoffersen   Alexis Pinturault

Men's most podiums in World CupEdit

Skiers having most podium in FIS Alpine Ski World Cup.[10]

  Still active

Updated to 23 June 2020.

# Skier Total Last
1   Ingemar Stenmark 72 19-02-1989
2   Marcel Hirscher 59 24-02-2019
3   Michael Von Grueningen 46 15-03-2003
4   Ted Ligety 41 28-01-2018
5   Benjamin Raich 35 01-03-2015
6   Alberto Tomba 31 06-01-1998
7   Alexis Pinturault 29 16-03-2019
8   Hermann Maier 28 23-10-2005
9   Phil Mahre 26 05-03-1984
10   Gustavo Thoeni 26 02-01-1977
11   Marc Girardelli 26 27-03-1993
12   Massimiliano Blardone 25 13-02-2016
13   Bode Miller 21 08-12-2013
14   Fredrik Nyberg 20 17-03-2006

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "The International Ski Competition Rules" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2018-03-25. Retrieved 2017-01-16.
  2. ^ Ted Ligety, Skiing's Most Outspoken Critic, Is Still the Best in the World, bleacher report, 2012-10-28.
  3. ^ A Letter To FIS, David Dodge, 2011.
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ Update on Injury Trends in Alpine Skiing, Johnson, Etlinger, Shealy, Update on Injury Trends in Alpine Skiing, 2009
  6. ^ Unfälle und Verletzungen im alpinen Skisport Archived 2011-11-25 at the Wayback Machine, David Schulz, Auswertungsstelle für Skiunfälle, Stiftung Sicherheit im Skisport, 2011.
  7. ^ Francesco Vida. La storia dello sci in Italia.
  8. ^ Allen, John (2010-01-31). "First Giant Slalom". Skiing Heritage. International Skiing History Assoc. Retrieved 31 December 2011.
  9. ^ "Winter Sports Chart - Alpine Skiing". Retrieved 11 February 2018.

External linksEdit