It didn’t take long for Whistler’s Michael Janyk to find his groove in slalom, after missing most of last season with a back injury.
He had a rough start to the season, failing to qualify for a second run in two slalom races and two giant slalom events, but found his groove again in a night slalom Tuesday at Zagreb, Croatia. He was a solid eighth after the opening run, and then raced a little more conservatively the second time around to place 10 th . It was his 12 th career top-10 finish, and couldn’t have come at a better time.
“It’s a bit of weight lifted off my shoulders, for sure,” said Janyk. “It feels really good to be back in the top-10 to say the least. I knew that I was skiing as well as I had in the past and that it was just a matter of time.
“On my second run I skied unbelievably at the top and then I got some nerves. I started thinking about finishing. I was holding back a bit because I wanted to make it to the bottom. All in all, it was a pretty good day though.”
Janyk moved up to 27 th in the World Cup slalom standings, two spots behind where he needs to be to get an invite to the World Cup Finals at the end of the season.
Jean-Baptiste Grange of France took the win, just five hundredths of a second ahead of Ivica Kostelic of Croatia. Guiliana Razzoli of Italy was third. None of the other Canadians — Patrick Biggs, Julien Cousineau or Thomas Grandi — qualified for a second run.
On the women’s side the win went to Maria Riesch of Germany, followed by Nicole Gius of Italy and Sarka Zahrobska of Czech Republic. Canadians Anna Goodman and Brigitte Acton did not qualify for a second run.