It's March in Grandvalira and the cameraman is wearing short sleeves.
The skiers hurtle towards the finish line, cross it at 110 km/h and then skid to a stop. They fly past the cameraman, who is seen sprinkled with snow while holding the steadycam. In some sections of L'Àliga, the track that hosts the Super G, the ice is noticeable. The heat is noticeable. We contemplate the scene in shirt sleeves, with sunglasses and a cap. It's March, but the sun radiates its power.
Elena Curtoni (32) crosses the finish line, looks back at the scoreboard and yells.
The marker curses her.
The Italian, leader until that moment, has been thick and inefficient. She has not been able to reinterpret the state of the track, at that time already soft and slow. She has registered the tenth time. She has fallen an abyss (1s23) from the winner, Lara Gut, and that is a disaster. Curtoni will not emulate Sofia Goggia, the champion of the day before, the queen of the descent.
Curtoni will not collect the Crystal Globe, nor will he even get on the Super-G podium. She is going to be fourth.
Sitting on the throne of leader of the day, Lara Gut (31) breathes with relief. She can already celebrate her success, this is her fifth Crystal Globe, the fourth she has collected in the Supergiant (she has a fifth Crystal Globe as champion of everything, the one in 2016).
Gut has been blessed by a masterful descent and much better track conditions in his turn. Curtoni descended later, already with the sun burning down and the track slowed down.
Under the heat, the children who populate the stands also attend the decomposition of Mikaela Shiffrin (28). The best female skier of all time (men and women included) never enters the race. She doesn't expect it either.
The Supergiant uncovers his weaknesses. Shiffrin is more technical than fast. She never finds her rhythm, and the final record is a drop: she is 1.46 seconds behind Gut.
The technicians interpret that she has competed relaxed. The title of the general classification was his, by far, with a margin of a thousand points over Gut. It had been his for weeks, long before he landed in Grandvalira.
Despite his downturn, fans watch weapons.
They expect the American to multiply her performance in the tests on Saturday (the giant) and Sunday (the slalom).
Shiffrin, the best skier of all time (accumulates 87 World Cup victories, more than anyone in history, more than Ingemar Stenmark and Lindsey Vonn), adds five general classification titles and another ten Crystal Globes. She has achieved seven of them in the slalom and another two in the giant. They are the tests that she best masters.