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Ted Ligety Ready For Another Season

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Two-time Olympic gold medalist Ted Ligety is back on the slopes with a strong start to the season. The Park City resident is scaling back wear and tear while remaining focused on making podiums in Giant Slalom events.

Park City ski racer Ted Ligety placed fifth at the opening event in Sölden, Austria where he’s previously won four times. Ligety said he was pleased with the result from the seasons opening weekend.

“I mean for sure I want to get to a place where I can be on the podium and winning races but after last year and not having the greatest season, I think that's a good at least first start,” Ligety said. “We have Beaver Creek coming up in a few weeks here and that's a hill that’s also treat me really well and hopefully I can start to make that next climb after that.”

After season ending knee surgery in 2016 and season ending back surgery in 2017, Ligety reports that he feels as healthy as he’s felt in a while. As part of his work to remain healthy Ligety will be competing in just the Giant Slalom this year.

“Generally, I'd fly over to Europe after Beaver Creek at the beginning of December and then stay over there until end of March racing almost every single weekend,” Ligety explained. “Whereas only doing GS this year I'll be home a lot more. So, after Christmas every GS race is about three weeks apart so I'll come home for week and a half, two weeks and be able to spend time with the family at home and ski here at Deer Valley and then fly back over for the next race. So, it will be a lot different that's respect. My son is two-and-a-half years old almost now and it's not as easy to travel with him on the road as it has been in the past. So, they'll stay at home and then I'll just be bouncing back and forth.” 

Ligety says he’ll plan to arrive in Europe about nine days before races to train and then do some lighter training while he’s back in Park City.

“Well I’m 35 now so I don't need the same volume as I did when I was in my early 20’s,” Ligety continued. “So, I don't need to be training on icy hard conditions every single day like I did trying to develop the skill set. So, now it's about ramping up the intensity and staying healthy. Having that much volume is definitely harder on my body, so trying to manage that volume load. When I get the good conditions go hard and really maximize what I can do with there.”

Ligety has hinted that this might be his final year, he says that decision will depend a lot on how this year with a single event goes.

“It kind of depends on how the body is feeling and the results are going,” Ligety said. “If I feel like I can win, and my body feels good I want to keep going. But if the body is a struggle and 5th place is the best I do all year then I don't see myself wanting to keep going that much longer.”

KPCW reporter David Boyle covers all things in the Heber Valley as well as sports and breaking news.
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