Road To The Olympic Games

Overnight snow of 50 cm wipes out men's giant slalom opener in Austria

The season-opening men's World Cup giant slalom that was cancelled due to bad weather at the Rettenbach glacier in Sö​lden, Austria, on Sunday will be rescheduled for another resort in Europe.

New date, venue for World Cup event to be announced Monday

Austrian soldiers take down the finish line banner as the men's giant slalom competition was cancelled Sunday due to heavy snowfall and strong winds in Sö​lden. Organizers are expected to announce the new date and venue on Monday. (Joe Klamar/AFP/Getty Images)

The season-opening men's World Cup giant slalom that was cancelled due to bad weather at the Rettenbach glacier on Sunday will be rescheduled for another resort in Europe.

The men's race director of governing body FIS, Markus Waldner, said the race will be held before the Christmas break, and that organizers were expected to announce the new date and venue on Monday.

Excessive snowfall and strong winds forced the cancellation of Sunday's race in Sö​lden, Austria.

Organizers initially delayed the start of the giant slalom by an hour, but called off the event soon after as no improvement of the weather was forecast.

New rule

"It is no longer possible to clean the course from the 50 centimetres of overnight snowfall and ensure a safe race," FIS said, adding that high winds were blowing fresh snow onto the course as well.

It's the second straight year that the traditional season opener on the Austrian glacier had to be cancelled, after gusts made the race impossible in 2017.

Poor conditions for women's race

Under old FIS regulations, the opening race of a season could not be moved or rescheduled, but that rule has changed this season.

The first race of the women's World Cup on the same course Saturday took place in tough conditions with low clouds and snowfall.

World champion Tessa Worley of France won the race, ahead of Italy's Federica Brignone and Olympic GS champion Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States.

The next World Cup events are slaloms in Levi, Finland, with the women racing on Nov. 17 and the men the following day.

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