New: TIGHTER IS FASTER
MIKE: Less vertical distance between gates, better skis and stronger racers changed the game. Now the best competitors can take a tighter line--seen above. We can blast through a gate instead of passing around it, knowing it will break away (A). The line to the next gate is lower and closer to the gate (B). We still start turns very early (C), but the direction change happens with an earlier carve and over a shorter arc. There is virtually no skid (D). This line, which once seemed impossible, now works (provided we are strong enough to withstand the increased G-forces) because we have more confidence in the skis' ability to hold (E).
Old: STAY HIGH AND ROUND
STU: Back when GS skis were 210 cm long with little sidecut, there was a saying: "float, touch, sting." The fastest way between two points was not a straight line. Smooth, round turns were considered fastest, even if we traveled a longer distance. We stepped uphill to get a higher angle of attack on the gate below (2). We began turns on the "rise line" directly above the turning pole (3). We tried to get the direction change more or less completed before we reached the gate (4), so we "came up under it" in the best position to attack the next gate (5).