29¢ Alpine Skiing
Issue Date: January 6, 1994
City: Salt Lake City, UT
Printed By: Ashton-Potter
Printing Method: Lithographed
A breathtaking sport, downhill or Alpine skiing is a test of speed and skill as competitors race over a course at up to 65 miles per hour. An Olympic event since 1936, Alpine skiing consists of five different contests: downhill, slalom, giant slalom, super giant slalom, and the combined.
A test of high-speed skiing, the men’s downhill is run on a course that drops 800 to 1,000 meters. A skilled downhill racer can complete the course in 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. The slalom challenges the skier’s skill in high-speed turns. A series of numbered gates are set up so that the racers must make many turns, skiing in a zig-zag fashion.
Combining the elements of the downhill and the slalom, the giant slalom requires both speed and the ability to make high-speed turns. The super giant slalom is a cross between the downhill and the giant slalom. And the combined competition consists of a downhill race and a slalom. Although the two events are always held at the same location, they often take place on different days.
Women also compete in these events, although at shorter distances and on courses with less of a vertical drop.