The Saslong Downhill is a Classic and this year it's a special event. Including both this year's downhills, the magical figure of 40 will be reached.
The course was projected by Ing. Hubert Spiess from Austria and was first used as a race course at the pre-championships trial in February 1969. The first winner was Jean-Daniel Dätwyler from Switzerland who needed 2.07.75 minutes for the 3,5 km long course.
In the meantime, 26 different ahtletes from seven different nations (Switzerland, Austria, Italy, Norway, Canada, Liechtenstein, and France) have finished first. Nationwise, number one is Austria with 14 first places, followed by Switzerland with 13.
The best individual racer has been Franz Klammer (AUT) with 4 wins, followed by Peter Müller (SUI) and Kristian Ghedina with 3 each and Bernhard Russi AND Franz Heinzer (SUI), Helmuth Höflehner and Patrick Ortler (AUT) and Rob Boyd (CAN) with two each.The following racers won once: From Switzerland Jean-Daniel Dätwyler, Roland Collombin, Conradin Cathomen, Urs Räber, Primin Zurbriggen, and William Besse. From South Tyrol Herbert Plank, from Norway Erik Haaker, Atle Skardaal, and Lasse Kjus. From Austria Sepp Walcher, Harti Weirather, Erwin Resch, Peter Wirnsberger, Leonhard Stock, and Andreas Schifferer. From Liechtenstein Markus Foser and finally from France Luc Alphand.
The record was established in 1992 by Swiss William Besse with 1.59.5 and on the shortened track 1980 by Harti Weirather with 1.53.0.
A total of 38 races were run since 1969, twelve of them were double events, i.e. in 1972, 76, 78, 80, 89, 90, 92, 93, 96, 89, and 99. Three races were run on the shortened track, and four races were canceled due to lack of snow or bad weather (1973, 94, 97, 2000).
This year, Gröden was awarded by the FIS with the organization of two races. Originally, it should have been a SuperG and a Downhill. Recently, this has been changed to two Downhills.
1983 a SuperG had been run on the Saslong, won by Pirmin Zurbriggen, second Martin Hangl and third Leonhard Stock. In 1972, as Gian Slalom was run on the Saslong, won by Swiss Edmund Bruggmann, second Reinhard Tritscher (AUT), third Roland Thöni (ITA).