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Step into the world of giant slalom ski racing through the eyes of Peter Duncan, a local legend with a remarkable ski career. As a former Olympic competitor in 1964 and 1968, world championship competitor in 1962, 1966, and 1970, and a participant in the Ski World Cup from 1967 to 1971, Duncan brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the snowy slopes. Beyond his competitive years, he served as the president of the International Ski Racers Association (ISRA) from 1971 to 1980 and graced television screens as a ski analyst from 1971 to 2014. With an unwavering passion for Mont Tremblant, Duncan shares his insights on what it’s like to step into the boots of the female giant slalom ski racers gearing up for the World Cup on December 2 and 3.

3, 2, 1, GO!

“Standing in the starting gate of a World Cup event, anywhere in the world and across Alpine disciplines, the thrill and experience are mind-boggling. However, being in your own country, on a trail you’ve skied and trained on, racing in front of family, skiing buddies, or die-hard supporters, the challenge takes on a different form. Results are expected from the athletes and their supporters, and the approach to such events requires a specific mindset. Concentration on the task at hand is paramount; the race is the reason for being in the starting gate. You know your competitors, have studied the course from top to bottom, are keenly aware of your strengths and weaknesses, and the hill is familiar. Nothing should surprise you; you’ve conquered steeper courses. Before the 3-2-1 go, be happy and don’t disappoint yourself. You’ve trained all your life for this moment; go for the win, nothing else. Trust your instincts; it’s all about you. Making this race about you isn’t selfish; winning is everything, losing is not a steady job.”

Risk Factor

“For spectators, watching a Giant Slalom World Cup on television leaves them unaware of two crucial factors related to ski racing: the steepness of the playing field and the sensations of speed. Even as analysts we mention speed, but to actually hear the skis arc through the snow and ice greatly enhances the risk factor. The sound of the racer cutting through the winter’s cold air adds to the challenge. A winning run is obvious, akin to being at the opera where a false note can be detected by the audience. The good Giant Slalom racer establishes her tempo.”

The Flying Mile

“This race will be lost or won on the flatter section. The Flying Mile, as seen by a former racer, is divided into three sections. First up: the start section, which is relatively steep and tricky. Why tricky? The surface on the steepest section changes angles within gates. Should you come out of your turn a bit too low, you lose speed, and it taxes your momentum going across the second section: the flat. The trick is to accumulate speed from the first steep section and ride a flat ski, or float if you will, through the mid-section. Finally, attack the last pitch as if there’s no tomorrow. You can recoup some speed before the finish line. Turn your head as you cross the finish line and check your time. If your results bring a smile 😃, you should be satisfied with your effort.”


“As for the resort, hosting a World Cup automatically adds instant credibility. Even though Tremblant has been around for a good while, the event reminds its faithful clientele that the resort is still very much involved in the ski business and shows the world that the mountain still attracts the best women ski racers on the planet. Congratulations to the organizing committee and a big hand of applause for the Volunteers.”

“Happy trails to every skier ⛷️.”

-Peter Duncan