Hungry Kostelic develops mighty appetite

Janica Kostelic developed a vigorous appetite over the summer.

Janica Kostelic developed a vigorous appetite over the summer.

Starved for home cooking after her first year on the World Cup ski circuit, the 17-year-old Croat packed on 33 pounds during the off-season and at the same time appears to have developed an even greater hunger to win races.

After fourth place finishes in the season-opening slalom in Copper Mountain and in a giant slalom on Saturday, Kostelic finally made it to the top step of the podium on Sunday, moving her to the top of the World Cup standings.

And now that she's developed a taste for victory, she'll be looking for more when the circuit moves to Val d'Isere for a super-G and giant slalom on Wednesday and Thursday.

"I know I can win more races," said Kostelic. "I think I can win it (World Cup title) but not this year...I need more experience."

The Croatian teenager's modesty, however, may soon be eclipsed by her ability.

Already this season she has posted top-10 finishes in all four alpine disciplines, including a seventh in the only downhill and a sixth in the super-G.

Despite her tender years, Kostelic's presence atop the standings does not come as a surprise.

In her rookie season last year, Kostelic became one of the youngest ever World Cup winners with her victory in the combined event in St. Anton less than two weeks after her 17th birthday.

She also added a pair of third places finishes to her resume along with 11 top-10 results, cementing her status as one of the World Cup's brightest young stars.

"It feels really good," laughed Kostelic, after collecting her second career win. "It's like a dream."

Despite her success, Kostelic admits that she found it difficult to adapt to life on the White Circus.

A dislike for western food, especially North American, combined with the usual first-season nerves, saw Kostelic lose so much weight near the end of her rookie campaign that talk began to circulate that the teenager was suffering from anorexia.

"She was only 16 and she was lost without her mother," explained the skier's coach and father Ante Kostelic. "She wouldn't eat but not so much because of the pressure but because she didn't like the food."

It was only when Kostelic returned home in the spring that she began to regain the lost pounds - anticipating another drop in her weight this season.

"It was difficult last year," said Kostelic. "I didn't know how things worked and my head was psychologically shaky. Now I know how it works and it's better.

"I did put some weight back on," said Kostelic with a smile. "I think it's because I didn't train so much this summer because of injuries."

Showing as much potential in the speed events as in the technical disciplines, Kostelic has already been widely pegged as a future World Cup champion.

"It's amazing how she's skiing," said Norway's Trine Bakke, who finished runner-up behind Kostelic in Sunday's slalom. "She showed in other races this season that she could do it. It wouldn't be long.

"She lets her skis go like no one else," said Bakke, fourth in the World Cup slalom standings last year. "It's incredible. She's only 17 years old. I admire her skiing. I should do more like her."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
film
Extras
The Tesco Hudl2: An exceptional Android tablet that's powerful, well-built and outstanding value
indybest

Life and Style
food + drinkAuthor DBC Pierre presents his guide to the morning after
News
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Life and Style
food + drink
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas