Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Norway’s ski twins fulfill a boy’s dream

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Norwegian rejoicing in Adelboden: Atle Lie McGrath (left) finished second in the slalom behind compatriot Lucas Braathen.


Marcel W. Perrenreporter sports

Lucas Braathen (25) originally wanted to be a footballer. Until he was eleven, the son of a Brazilian woman emulated his idols from the Seleçao. But his sporting ambitions changed completely when his Norwegian dad Björn signed him up with Skiklub Bærums in the Oslo region. The former US world-class slalom skier Felix McGrath was employed as a coach in this club. And his son Atle Lie developed into a congenial training partner for Lucas. “We were both 12 when Atle Lie and I vowed that one day we would finish 1st and 2nd in a World Cup race.”

Now this boy’s dream has come true in the slalom on the Chuenisbärgli – Braathen celebrates his fifth World Cup victory ahead of McGrath. It is a special irony of fate that the two of them made their childhood prophecy come true in the Bernese Oberland of all places. In 2021 Lucas (torn cruciate ligament) and Atle Lie (ankle and ligament injury) suffered serious knee injuries in the giant slalom in Adelboden. And last year Braathen stopped the competition before entering the steep target slope because he couldn’t overcome his weaker self for fear of another serious fall. But now it’s the rest of the slalom world that has to fear the two alpine twins from the north.

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