The Snow Queen Trophy is a women’s and men’s World Ski Cup slalom race and is held on Zagreb’s Sljeme since 2005.
The original name of the race was the Golden Bear but after the first edition it was changed in honor of Janica Kostelić. It was her sports success that earned Croatia and Zagreb the honor of organizing the event. This skiing competition takes place on the Red Slope. The start is at 985 m above sea level and the finish at 785 m. The Snow Queen Awards are the biggest in the Women’s World Cup races and amount to 165.000 EUR. The winner gets 60.000 EUR. Until 2012 the winner received 120.000 EUR.
This event is very popular not only among citizens of Zagreb.
The first few years of the competition was attended by 15 – 20.000 viewers, making it the most popular women’s race in the World Cup. Snow Queen Trophy is the only one held in close proximity to a city inhabited by more than a million people. Where is a race there is a winner: the winning trophy is a hand-made crystal crown engraved with the name of the winner. The winner also gets a cloak and sits on a throne like a real Queen/King. Speaking of the Queen…
On the 5th of January, 2006., on her 24th birthday, Janica Kostelić skied maybe the best race of her life, which also made her a legend of world skiing. From 7th place in the first run, without a pole and a glove, she skied to 3rd place in the second run, beating along the way the Olympic winner in slalom at the time (Anja Pärson). That was an unprecedented venture in the history of world skiing. Ana Jelušić took 2nd place in 2007 on Sljeme and became the first Croatian after Janica Kostelić to win a World Cup medal.
The list of the recent winners of Snow Queen Trophy include:
2018: Hirscher Marcel, Mikaela Shiffrin
2017: Manfred Moelgg, Veronika Velez Zuzulova
2016: No competiton held
2015: Marcel Hirscher, Mikaela Shiffrin