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On the slopes at Hafjell on Saturday, Austrian Nadine Fest took won women's super-G by a huge margin.
Aged just 17, Nadine Fest is the next big hope for Austrian skiing. With proven talent across the alpine disciplines, particularly in the speed events, Fest has already racked up numerous victories in junior events and can count victories in FIS super-G, giant slalom and downhill events to her name.
Fest took to the very same slopes in Hafjell just three weeks before the Youth Olympic Games for the National Junior Championships, where she won the downhill, combined and super-G titles. After one of her numerous trips to the podium she posted an image to her Facebook page, writing “no need for words!” with the hashtags #Lillehammer2016 and #Iamready.
She showed just how ready she was on Saturday as the first Alpine ski competition got underway at the second ever Winter Youth Olympic Games. Starting with bib number 6 on the Kringleasen piste at Hafjell, Nadine found her rhythm immediately. Her smooth acceleration helped propel her safely down the course in a time of 1:11.93 in a style reminiscent of Alpine legend Ana Fenninger, putting her over a second in front of the current leader Melanie Meillard (SUI).
Fest’s teammate Julia Scheib managed to come the closest to her time but still finished 0.63 se-conds behind for an Austrian 1-2. Swiss skier Aline Danioth completed the podium, 0.76 seconds back. Fest’s Olympic win was clear and error-free, with a huge margin of victory.
“When I crossed the finish line, I said to myself, ‘Is this true?’”, said Fest. She immediately knew she had skied a strong run on the slopes of Hafjell, last used in Olympic competition during the women’s alpine at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games. “Then I went on the podium and I realise now I’ve won and it’s a great feeling. I had a dream. It was this medal. And now, it’s in my hands. It’s amazing! It was really hard training in the summer, every training session I pushed harder and harder and now it’s great I can see the results!” she continued.
“It was very emotional on the podium,” said Julia Scheib. “It was a good feeling and think I’ve done a good job.” For bronze medallist Aline Danioth, “It was a special moment. I never thought I’d win bronze in the super-G. I’m so surprised!”
Places on the Austrian Alpine “wunderteam” are not easy to come by but Fest will be a serious con-tender in the future. And it won’t be a surprise to see her back in the podium in the remaining Alpine ski competitions at the WYOG. Beyond that, this talented young skier is surely dreaming of big things to come.