FIS Alpine Ski World Cup
|Alpine Ski World Cup|
South Korea (rarely)
New Zealand (rarely)
|Inaugurated||5 January 1967
7 January 1967 (ladies)
|Founder|| Serge Lang
|Organised by||International Ski Federation|
|People|| Markus Waldner (men)
Atle Skårdal (ladies)
The FIS Alpine Ski World Cup is the top international circuit of alpine skiing competitions, launched in 1966 by a group of ski racing friends and experts which included French journalist Serge Lang and the alpine ski team directors from France (Honore Bonnet) and the USA (Bob Beattie). It was soon backed by International Ski Federation president Marc Hodler during the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships 1966 at Portillo, Chile, and became an official FIS event in the spring of 1967 after the FIS Congress at Beirut, Lebanon. The first World Cup ski race was held in Berchtesgaden, West Germany, on January 5, 1967. Jean-Claude Killy of France and Nancy Greene of Canada were the overall winners for the first two seasons.
Competitors attempt to achieve the best time in four disciplines: slalom, giant slalom, super G, and downhill. The fifth event, the combined, employs the downhill and slalom. The World Cup originally included only slalom, giant slalom, and downhill races. Combined events (calculated using results from selected downhill and slalom races) were included starting with the 1974/75 season, while the Super G was added for the 1982/83 season. The current scoring system was implemented in the 1991/92 season. For every race points are awarded to the top 30 finishers: 100 points to the winner, 80 for second, 60 for third, winding down to 1 point for 30th place. The racer with the most points at the end of the season in mid-March wins the Cup, with the trophy consisting of a 9 kilogram crystal globe. Sub-prizes are also awarded in each individual race discipline, with a smaller 3.5 kg crystal globe. (See the section on scoring system below for more information.)
The World Cup is held annually, and is considered the premier competition for alpine ski racing after the quadrennial Winter Olympics. Many consider the World Cup to be a more valuable title than the Olympics or the biennial World Championships, since it requires a competitor to ski at an extremely high level in several disciplines throughout the season, and not just in one race.
Races are hosted primarily at ski resorts in the Alps in Europe, with regular stops in Scandinavia, North America, and east Asia, but a few races have also been held in the Southern Hemisphere. World Cup competitions have been hosted in 25 different countries around the world: Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States. (Note that all World Cup races hosted at ski resorts in Bosnia and Slovakia were held when those countries were still part of Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia respectively.)
- 1 Overall winners
- 2 Overall titles
- 3 Discipline titles
- 4 Greatest alpine skiers of all-time
- 5 Most World Cup wins in each discipline
- 6 Various records
- 7 Most successful race winners
- 8 20 wins and more in Speed/Technical Events
- 9 Top results
- 10 All-event winners
- 11 Most race wins in a single season
- 12 Timeline calendar
- 13 World Cup scoring system
- 14 World Cup Finals
- 15 Parallel slalom
- 16 Parallel Giant Slalom
- 17 Nations Cup
- 18 Nations which have won World Cup races
- 19 Multi winners
- 20 Crystal globe
- 21 See also
- 22 References
- 23 External links
Individual wins by nation
The following skiers have at least three overall alpine World Cup titles.
Combined crystal globe was officially awarded from 2007–2012. However, there are counted all season titles, both official and unofficial. The records for most World Cup titles in each discipline are as follows:
|Downhill||Franz Klammer||Austria||5||Lindsey Vonn||United States||8|
|Super G||Hermann Maier
Aksel Lund Svindal
|Giant Slalom||Ingemar Stenmark||Sweden||8||Vreni Schneider||Switzerland||5|
|Slalom||Ingemar Stenmark||Sweden||8||Vreni Schneider||Switzerland||6|
|Combined||Kjetil Andre Aamodt||Norway||5||Brigitte Örtli
Greatest alpine skiers of all-time
Based on ski-database super ranking system (since 1966). This is a scoring system calculating points together from three categories: Olympic Games, World Championships and World Cup (overall titles, discipline titles and individual top 10 results).
Men's super ranking
Ladies' super ranking
- As of 18 February 2017
Most World Cup wins in each discipline
The records for most World Cup wins in each discipline are as follows (as of 22 January 2017):
|Prize money in CHF (single season)||2000||Hermann Maier||660,000||2013||Tina Maze||701,797|
|Overall points||2000||Hermann Maier||2000||2013||Tina Maze||2414|
|Margin of victory||2001||Hermann Maier||743||2013||Tina Maze||1313|
|Avg. points per race (participated races)||2013||Marcel Hirscher||77||2013||Tina Maze||69|
|Avg. points per race (all races in a season)||2000||Hermann Maier||50||2013||Tina Maze||69|
|Overall leader (complete season)||2005||Bode Miller||36||2013||Tina Maze||35|
| Marc Girardelli
|Consecutive overall titles||2012–2016||Marcel Hirscher||5||1971–1975||Annemarie Moser-Pröll||5|
|Discipline titles||1975–1984||Ingemar Stenmark||16||2008–2016||Lindsey Vonn||16|
|Discipline titles (single season)||1967
| Jean Claude Killy
| Lindsey Vonn
|All titles||1975–1984||Ingemar Stenmark||19||2008–2016||Lindsey Vonn||20|
|Wins (single season)||1979
| Ingemar Stenmark
|Most wins at one venue (single discipline)||2008–2016
| Ted Ligety
Aksel Lund Svindal
|Podiums (single season)||2000||Hermann Maier||22||2013||Tina Maze||24|
|Top 10s (single season)||1999||Kjetil André Aamodt||28||2013||Tina Maze||32|
|5 discipline winners (single season)||1989||Marc Girardelli||9||1991
| Petra Kronberger
|Total wins||1975–1989||Ingemar Stenmark||86||2005–2017||Lindsey Vonn||77|
|Total podiums||1974–1989||Ingemar Stenmark||155||2004–2017||Lindsey Vonn||127|
|Top 10 results||1990–2006||Kjetil André Aamodt||231||2004–2017||Lindsey Vonn||199|
|World Cup starts||1997–2014||Bode Miller||438||1993–2009||Renate Götschl||408|
|Winner with the highest start No.||1994||Markus Foser||66||1994||Katja Koren||66|
|Youngest race winner||1973||Piero Gros||18.1||1973||Pamela Behr||16.2|
|Oldest race winner||2012||Didier Cuche||37.5||2015||Elisabeth Goergl||33.8|
|Consecutive wins (all disciplines)||1977–1978||Ingemar Stenmark||10||1989||Vreni Schneider||10|
|Consecutive wins (single discipline)||1978–1980||Ingemar Stenmark||15||1989–1990||Vreni Schneider||12|
|Consecutive podiums (all disciplines)||1979–1981||Ingemar Stenmark||41||1979–1980||Marie-Therese Nadig||14|
|Consecutive podiums (single discipline)||1977–1982||Ingemar Stenmark||37||1971–1974||Annemarie Moser-Pröll||23|
|Top speed (kph)||2013||Johan Clarey||161.9||1990
| Katharina Gutensohn
NOTE: Only crystal globe awarded discipline officially counts as titles. And medal's awarded DH, GS, SL disciplines in seasons 1967-1977 as well. Combined crystal globe was officially awarded only in seasons 2007-2012.
Most successful race winners
A common measurement of how good individual skiers are is the total number of World Cup races won during their skiing career. The following skiers have won at least 20 World Cup races:
- See also the complete list of FIS Alpine Ski World Cup race winners – Men
As of 29 January 2017
|9||Aksel Lund Svindal||2001–active||32||12||15||4||–||1||–||–|
|17||Michael von Grünigen||1989–2003||23||–||23||–||–||–||N/A|
|18||Kjetil André Aamodt||1989–2006||21||1||5||6||1||8||–||N/A|
- Note: Hermann Maier was disqualified after winning the GS race in Val d'Isère in December 1997 for removing one ski before the official red line.
- See also the complete list of FIS Alpine Ski World Cup race winners – Women
As of 31 January 2017
- Note: Only parallel events from (1975, 1997, 2011-2013) which count for overall ranking, included on this list, are considered as official individual World Cup victories.
20 wins and more in Speed/Technical Events
As of 22 January 2017
As of 29 January 2017
- NOTE: Super G not contested at that time.
- NOTE: Parallel events are not included in the list as slalom wins.
As of 29 January 2017
Career Top Ten results
As of 22 January 2017
- NOTE: Only parallel events from (1975, 1997, 2011–2013, 2016) which count for overall ranking, included on this list, are considered as official individual World Cup victories.
Only a few of the most versatile racers have ever managed to win races in all five World Cup alpine skiing disciplines during their career, as listed in the table below. Marc Girardelli (1988–89), Petra Kronberger (1990–91), Janica Kostelić (2005–6) and Tina Maze (2012–13) are the only skiers to have won all five events in a single season. Of these, Tina Maze is the only one to have won five different events in a row within a single season (2012-13, between December 16 and March 2). Bode Miller is the only skier with at least five World Cup victories in all five disciplines. Since the combined was not introduced until the 1974–75 season and the Super G until 1982–83, the following list also includes those racers who won races in all disciplines contested during their World Cup careers (events not contested are marked by NA).
Most race wins in a single season
The following skiers have won at least 10 World Cup races in a single season (events not available in a given season are marked by NA):
World Cup scoring system
The World Cup scoring system is based on awarding a number of points for each place in a race, but the procedure for doing so and the often-arcane method used to calculate the annual champions has varied greatly over the years. Originally, points were awarded only to the top 10 finishers in each race, with 25 points for the winner, 20 for second, 15 for third, 11 for fourth, 8 for fifth, 6 for sixth, 4 for seventh, and then decreasing by 1 point for each lower place. To determine the winner for each discipline World Cup, only a racer's best 3 results would count, even though there would typically be 6–8 races in each discipline. For the overall Cup, the best three results in each discipline would be summed. Until 1970, also the results of Winter Olympic Games races and Alpine World Ski Championship races were included in the World Cup valuation (i.e. Grenoble 1968 and Val Gardena 1970); this was abandoned after 1970, mainly due to the limited number of racers per nation who are admitted to take part in these events. For the 1971–72 season, the number of results counted was increased to 5 in each discipline. The formula used to determine the overall winner varied almost every year over the next decade, with some seasons divided into two portions with a fixed number of results in each period counting towards the overall, while in other seasons the best 3 or 4 results in each discipline would count.
Starting with the 1979–80 season, points were awarded to the top 15 finishers in each race. After 1980–81, the formula for the overall title stabilized for several years, counting the best 5 results in the original disciplines (slalom, giant slalom, and downhill) plus the best 3 results in combined. When Super G events were introduced for the 1982–83 season, the results were included with giant slalom for the first three seasons, before a separate discipline Cup was awarded starting in 1985–86 and the top 3 Super G results were counted towards the overall. The formula for the overall was changed yet again the following season, with the top 4 results in each discipline counting, along with all combined results (although the combined was nearly eliminated from the schedule, reduced to only 1 or 2 events per season).
This perennial tweaking of the scoring formula was a source of ongoing uncertainty to the World Cup racers and to fans. The need for a complete overhaul of the scoring system had grown increasingly urgent with each successive year, and in 1987–88 the FIS decided to fully simplify the system: all results would now count in each discipline and in the overall. This new system was an immediate success, and the practice of counting all results has been maintained in every subsequent season. With the ongoing expansion of the number and quality of competitors in World Cup races over the years, a major change to the scoring system was implemented in the 1991–92 season. The top 30 finishers in each race would now earn points, with 100 for the winner, 80 for second, 60 for third, and then decreasing by smaller increments for each lower place. The point values were adjusted slightly the following season (to reduce the points for places 4th through 20th), and the scoring system has not been changed again since that year. The table below compares the point values under all five scoring systems which have been in use:
† NOTE: The scoring system changed during the 1978–79 season; this special system was used for the last 2 men's downhills and the last 3 races in every other discipline except combined.
Since the Top 30 scoring system was implemented in 1991–92., the number of completed men's or women's World Cup races each year has ranged from 30 to 44, so the maximum possible point total for an individual racer is about 3000–4400 under the current scoring system. However, very few racers actually ski in all events; for example, Bode Miller was "the only skier to have competed in every World Cup race" during the three seasons from 2003–2005. The current record for total World Cup points in a season is Tina Maze's 2414 points in 2012–13, with the men's record of 2000 points set by Hermann Maier in 1999–2000. The fewest points for an overall champion under the current system thus far have been 1009 for men by Aksel Lund Svindal in 2008-9 and 1248 for women by Vreni Schneider in 1994–95. The largest margin of victory in the overall has been Maze's 1313 points in 2012-13, more than doubling second-place finisher Maria Höfl-Riesch's total, while the largest men's margin was 743 points by Hermann Maier in 2000-1. Note that in the early days of World Cup (when the first place was awarded only 25 points), even larger relative margins of victory were recorded in 1967 by Jean-Claude Killy with 225 points over Heinrich Messner with 114 points and in 1973–74 by Annemarie Moser-Pröll with 268 points over Monika Kaserer with 153 points. The closest finishes since 1992 have been minuscule margins of 6 points in 1994–95 (Vreni Schneider over Katja Seizinger), 3 points in 2004-5 (Anja Pärson over Janica Kostelić) and in 2010–11 (Maria Riesch over Lindsey Vonn), and only 2 points in 2008-9 (Aksel Lund Svindal over Benjamin Raich). The current men's record for total World Cup points in one month of the season is Ivica Kostelić's 999 points from January 2011.
The tables below contain a brief statistical analysis of the overall World Cup standings during the 21 seasons since the Top 30 scoring system was implemented in 1991–92. In general, over 1000 points are needed to contend for the overall title. At least 1 man and 1 woman has scored 1000 points in each of these seasons, but no more than 5 men's or women's racers have crossed that threshold in any single season. Of the 42 men's and women's overall champions in these years, 38 scored over 1200 points, 30 had over 1300 points, 19 reached 1500 points, and only 7 amassed more than 1700 points during their winning seasons. As for the runners-up, 37 of the 42 second-place finishers scored over 1000 points, 18 had over 1300 points, and only 4 reached 1500 points yet failed to win. Most overall titles have been won quite convincingly, by more than 200 points in 23 of 42 cases, while only 11 margins of victory have been tighter than 50 points.
World Cup Finals
Since 1993 the International Ski Federation (FIS) has hosted a World Cup Final at the end of each season in March. During five days, men's and women's races are held in four disciplines: slalom, giant slalom, Super G, and downhill. Only a limited number of racers are invited to ski at the Finals, including the top 25 in the World Cup standings in each discipline, plus the current junior World Champions in each discipline. Because of the smaller field, World Cup points are only awarded to the top 15 finishers in each race.
Hosts of the World Cup Finals:
The 2004 final was held in all FIS disciplines except Ski Jumping. The Freestyle events were held in neighbouring Sauze d'Oulx and the Snowboard events in Bardonecchia.
Note: Only parallel events from (1975, 1997, 2011-2013, 2016) count in overall ranking are considered as individual World Cup victories. Other parallel events from (1976-1991, 2009) counted only for Nations Cup or were just show events.
Parallel Giant Slalom
Introduced as a spectator-friendly event by the International Ski Federation in late 2015 on the World Cup circuit, the parallel competition, normally reserved for slalom types, hopes to lure more of the higher speed folks into the faster of the two technical disciplines. It is hoped that their fans follow them too: to the venue, on-line, and on television. The Federation has not indicated, as of early 2016, that they are fully committed to duplicating the effort, however, their long-term calendar shows that the plan is to return to Alta Badia twelve months after the inaugural event in December 2016, and then again, tentatively, through December 2018. Few venues offer the slope and conditions required to present an extremely short Giant Slalom course that is readily viewed in its entirety by a concentrated gallery of fans. Modified or not, the Federation has not mentioned that they will push the format to lesser tours like the NorAm and Europa Cup.
The Chief Race Director of the inaugural event, Markus Waldner, on 20 December 2015 stated that great performances and head-to-head fights between the best Giant Slalom racers is the goal of the competition. The course was very compact at about 20–22 seconds duration, or about one-third of a normal GS run, however, the pace and cadence will be the same as Giant Slalom, not standard Slalom. Gates were set at the same rough distances as GS and on a slope about the same pitch. The field of thirty-two were drawn following an 'invitational' format. The top four 'overall-ranked' men present were automatic invitees, if they chose to compete. Another sixteen racers were selected from the top of the current GS start list rankings, and the final twelve competitors were selected from the 1st run efforts at the standard GS event the day prior, at the same venue. Overlapping qualifications allowed the sponsors to invite lower ranked participants to fill in gaps, as needed, and to replace individuals who declined to participate. Points were awarded and accumulated according to current standards for the race season in all relevant categories: the GS discipline, Overall and Nations Cup. The field was filled with thirty-two first round participants, each getting a run on either course. The best combined times moved the fastest racer to the second round through bracket preference protocols. After that, bracket reduction was a one-run-and-done format, with the dominant skier from the previous round granted course selection between the 'red-right' or 'blue-left' lane. At about one-third the time of a standard GS event, top performers/finalists were able to make multiple runs without the fatigue of a longer event. The course was methodically set with lasers, and a GPS-equipped SnowCat, to guarantee that both lanes on the hill were as identical as possible to ensure equity and a fair competition. The Race Director suggested the difference between the two lanes were within 1–to-2 centimeters tolerance of one another.
The Nations Cup standings are calculated by adding up all points each season for all racers from a given nation.
The early years of the World Cup were largely dominated by the French ski team, as reflected in their Nations Cup wins in 5 of the first 6 years. The Austrian team then took over throughout the rest of the 1970s, followed by Swiss superiority during most of the 1980s. A resurgent Austrian team charged back to the top in 1988, beginning a long streak of consecutive Nations Cup triumphs. Austrian dominance reached its zenith in the late 1990s and 2000s (decade), when their points total regularly doubled that of the second-place finisher, and was capped in the 1999–2000 and 2003–4 seasons with totals that tripled those of runner-up Italy. Their 17927-point total in 1999–2000 is a Nations Cup record, as is their 12066-point margin of victory in 2003–4.
As of the end of the 2015–16 season, the Austrian team has won 29 consecutive Nations Cups, while topping the men's standings for 24 straight years and the women's for 18 in a row. Austria is the only nation to have finished in the top 3 of the Nations Cup standings in all 50 years in which World Cup competition has been held, winning in 38 of those years, runner-up in 11 years, and third place in a single year. Austrian men have failed to make the podium in only one season: 1972. Austrian women have failed to make the podium in only 2 seasons: 1981 and 1982. Switzerland with 7 wins and France with 5 wins are the only other nations to have won the nations cup. In the midst of the ongoing Austrian juggernaut, the Swiss or Italian teams have usually held second place. The German team reached the runner-up spot for the first time in 1997–8, as did the Norwegians the next season. The US enjoyed its best placings ever starting in 2004–5, grabbing second in the Nations Cup for two straight years.
Under the current scoring system (since 1992), the winning nation (Austria every year) has averaged over 13000 points, with an average of over 6400 for the runner-up, 5400 for third place, 4200 for fifth, and 1300 for tenth. The all-inclusive scoring system (simply adding together all World Cup points earned) favors national teams with great depth and many racers scoring World Cup points, and even teams with several top racers have no realistic chance of breaking the Austrian grip on the top spot, while a team with only one or two top-ranked racers will struggle to ever break the top five in the standings. There have been numerous calls for a revamped scoring system which would allow other nations to compete more readily for top spots in the Nations Cup, but no changes are likely to be made. In 2016, however, the Austrian men's team narrowly beat France by just 201 points.
The total number of top-three placings for each nation in the Nations Cup (through the 2015-16 season) are summarized below:
Note: Results for West Germany and Germany are counted together in this table.
Nations which have won World Cup races
Individual race wins are counted in this table, along with the nations team events held at World Cup Finals since 2006 (counts double as both men & women in mixed competition contribute to a win). The "parallel race" is a head-to-head slalom race format used occasionally from the 1970s through 1990s, and again in 2011. Team event wins are doubled (because on one team event race competed both women and men; so it's counted separately each for women and men). Results for West Germany and Germany are counted together in this table. All of Yugoslavia's wins are currently lumped in with Slovenia, since the skiers who won races for former Yugoslavia were all Slovenes from Slovenia (one of six Yugoslav Republics), and thus are listed under Slovenia in online databases. The Soviet Union and Russia are counted separately, as are Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic.
A total of 24 countries have won World Cup races, with 19 different countries winning men's races and 20 winning women's races. As expected, the top 10 nations in this list are the same as the 10 nations listed in the Nations Cup summary table (with slight changes in order).
Some interesting facts can be found in the data: Marc Girardelli accounted for all of Luxembourg's 46 wins, while Janica Kostelić has 30 of Croatia's 56 and her brother Ivica has the rest. Ingemar Stenmark still has nearly one-half of Sweden's 192 wins more than two decades after his retirement. Some nations specialize in either speed (downhill and Super G) or technical (slalom and GS) disciplines, while others are strong across the board. Among nations with 30+ wins, the Canadian team has won 73% of its races in speed events, while Yugoslavia/Slovenia has won 84% and Sweden 86% of their races in technical events, especially notable in Sweden's case given its large number of wins. Several nations with under 30 wins have 100% of them in technical events, led by Finland and Spain. In contrast Germany and Norway have the most even distribution without disproportionate strength or weakness in any one discipline. Some nations have strong teams in only one gender, as 92% of Norway's wins have come from their men and 83% of Germany's from their women, while the Swiss and Canadian totals are split almost equally.
Since 1967, the big crystal globe has been awarded for the overall title. From the beginning to 1976-77, discipline titles were awarded with medals. Statistically, those titles have the same value as the small crystal globes, which first appeared for discipline titles in slalom, giant slalom and downhill in the 1977-78. In super-G, the small globe has been awarded since 1985-86. For super-g races in the three seasons previous, points were added and calculated in the giant slalom ranking. In combined, the small crystal globe was officially awarded only between 2007-2012. Before that, combined season winners could not officially be considered as season titles. In those years FIS simply calculated points from the other two races, DH and SL.
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