What is believed to be a world first – a ski race in the centre of a capital city – has taken place in the Croatian city of Zagreb on Wednesday night.
Around 50 trucks worked through the night to transport 900 cubic metres of snow to the centre of town, turning Toma Bakač street, which passes Zagreb’s famous cathedral through to Manduševac fountain on the main Ban Josip Jelačić square, into a race slope.
Skiing legends over the past 50 years, including Croatian greats Janica and Ivica Kostelić, Alberto Tomba, Tina Maze, Marc Girardelli, and Pernilla Wiberg took part in the exhibition ski race which was held as part of the FIS Ski World Cup event – the Vip Snow Queen Trophy.
The legends race in downtown Zagreb marked 50 years since the first World Cup ski event.
Ivica Kostelić was first to race down the 165-metre course, clocking in at just over 17 seconds. He had to settle for 2nd place in the fun race with Renata Götschl finishing first.
“I never thought this would be possible. My father talked about it, that you could come to Jelačić square from Sljeme mountain. I am very happy to be part of it”, Ivica said.
The event was beamed all over the world with Sweden’s SVT , the BBC, J sports in Japan, NBC in the US and Eurosport all covering the event.