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Lara Gut, the winner in Sunday's Cortina super G.

Lara Gut, the winner in Sunday’s Cortina super G (GEPA)

The fourth and final day of the impromptu Cortina d’Ampezzo speed week was marked by a return to Beaver Creek form for Lara Gut and her third super G win of the season.

On a tight, technical course set by her former coach and Tina Maze’s new coach, Mauro Pini, a headwind may have also been a factor, working against some of the ladies running in the middle of pack. The course, which more nearly resembled the technicality of a GS, saw 19 DNFs when all was said and done.

Gut, who increased her lead in the super G standings with the result, was aggressive and found the fast line on a course where many racers seemed downright lost. Italians Verena Stuffer and Nadia Fanchini took advantage of favorable wind conditions to set the early times to beat. Stuffer wound up just shy of the podium in fourth as Fanchini dropped back to seventh.

“It is a good feeling to win today,” said Gut. “I started the season so strong with four podiums in the early races, but then the tour came back to Europe and I never to be seen on the podium again. It was a difficult time, I could see success in my mind, but you couldn’t see it on the slopes. Now today, this win, it was very important for me.”

Tina Weirather, skiing aggressively and early from top to bottom, earned another superb result and her ninth podium of the season in second place. She’ll need all the help she can get to remain within striking distance of overall tour leader Maria Hoefl-Riesch. The German was very quick early in the run but got twisted up a few times and nearly missed the last gate, nonetheless finishing third.

As for Saturday’s downhill winner, Maze, the technical set by her coach was likely of some benefit. For the second day in a row, she looked strong and was able to find a huge chunk of time in the final quarter of the run to finish fifth.

The Americans appeared fatigued in this fourth straight day of speed racing. The team has delivered some positive signs this week, especially from Stacey Cook and Julia Mancuso, both of whom recorded their best results of the season on Friday and Saturday. Mancuso was not driving over the ski quite as much as she had been earlier in the week. Cook, on the other hand, was speedy out of the gate, but line errors forced her to tap the brakes midway through the run. The top Americans finished 13th and 16th, respectively.

“We definitely had some huge wind gusts, and we had some totally calm conditions. We had the wind sometimes in front and sometimes in back with the visibility changing all the time. So it was very, very challenging,” said head U.S. women’s coach Alex Hoedlmoser. “Some of our girls didn’t get hit with any of that, it was just flat light. Other ones that were up front like Riesch came to the bottom at the flats to a complete stop and then in her case had tailwind and still picked up third. It was definitely for some of them fluky, but for most of our girls no excuses.”

Leanne Smith may have been the victim of some back luck with the wind, but it certainly was not her best skiing in 32nd. For the third straight day, C Teamer Jackie Wiles finished within World Cup points. She got kicked on the tail of her skis a few times but played it safe to finish 29th. Meanwhile, Julia Ford clipped a gate and lost the line, skiing off course and failing to finish.

British racer Chemmy Alcott, returning this week from an injury that knocked her out of the mix for the past few years, found renewed inspiration by finishing 23rd, her best result since 2010. Although Alcott likely benefited from the numerous DNFs, she played it safe for a great result in the same week she received a discretionary nod to represent Great Britain in the upcoming Olympic Games.

 

The Scoop

By Hank McKee

Women’s World Cup super G, Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, Jan. 26, 2014

Equipment - Skier, skis/boots/bindings

1 Gut, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol

2 Weirather, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic

3 Hoefl-Riesch, Head/Lange/Head

4 Stuffer, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer

5 Maze, Stoeckli/Lange/Atomic

6 Goergl, Head/Head/Head

7 Fanchini, Dynastar/Lange/Look

8 Fenninger, Head/Head/Head

9 Marchand-Arvier, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol

10 Hosp, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer

Women’s World Cup super G, Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, Jan. 26, 2014. … A make-up race originally scheduled at Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. … It is the 24th of 32 races on the women’s World Cup schedule. … The fifth of seven scheduled super G’s. … It is the 92nd World Cup race held at least in part at Cortina… the 29th super G.

It is the eighth career World Cup win for Lara Gut… her fifth in super G. … It is her fifth win of the season following back-to-back wins at Beaver Creek in November, a win at Lake Louise in December and the opening win at Soelden in October.

It is the 16th World Cup podium of Tina Weirather’s career, her ninth of the season and her third this season at Cortina.

It is the 81st career World Cup podium for Maria Hoefl-Riesch… her 58th in super G. … It is her ninth podium of the season and her tenth career podium scored at Cortina.

It is the sixth time Stacey Cook has placed top 13 in a race at Cortina… the fourth time this season in four chances. … Julia Mancuso records four of her top six finishes this season at Cortina in the last four days. … Jacqueline Wiles adds a third score to her World Cup career listing, all three of them coming at Cortina this season.

Maria Hoefl-Riesch maintains the lead of the World Cup overall standings 1071-943 over Tina Weirather. … Anna Fenninger (eighth in race) holds third with 871pts. … Mikaela Shiffrin (did not race) is sixth with 489pts and Marie-Michele Gagnon (33rd in race) is eighth with 453pts.

Lara Gut takes command of the super G standings 348-310 over Weirather. … Fenninger is third qith 277pts. … Stacey Cook leads the U.S. in 13th with 84pts (Mancuso is 14th with 78) and Gagnon leads Canada in 17th with 66pts.

Austria leads the women’s Nations Cup 4020-2255 over Switzerland. … Sweden is third with 1722pts. … The U.S. is sixth with 1330pts and Canada ninth with 717pts.

 

Results

Rank Bib FIS Code Name Year Nation Total Time Diff. FIS Points
 1  22  516138 GUT Lara 1991 SUI  1:27.81  0.00
 2  18  355050 WEIRATHER Tina 1989 LIE  1:27.93  +0.12  1.43
 3  21  206001 HOEFL-RIESCH Maria 1984 GER  1:28.42  +0.61  7.29
 4  3  296431 STUFFER Verena 1984 ITA  1:28.49  +0.68  8.13
 5  17  565243 MAZE Tina 1983 SLO  1:28.53  +0.72  8.61
 6  19  55576 GOERGL Elisabeth 1981 AUT  1:28.63  +0.82  9.81
 7  6  296729 FANCHINI Nadia 1986 ITA  1:28.79  +0.98  11.72
 8  16  55947 FENNINGER Anna 1989 AUT  1:29.00  +1.19  14.23
 9  1  196460 MARCHAND-ARVIER Marie 1985 FRA  1:29.10  +1.29  15.43
 10  8  55690 HOSP Nicole 1983 AUT  1:29.22  +1.41  16.86
 11  49  565320 FERK Marusa 1988 SLO  1:29.28  +1.47  17.58
 12  14  55970 SCHMIDHOFER Nicole 1989 AUT  1:29.29  +1.48  17.70
 13  23  537582 COOK Stacey 1984 USA  1:29.35  +1.54  18.41
 14  9  55766 STERZ Regina 1985 AUT  1:29.62  +1.81  21.64
 15  5  296008 MERIGHETTI Daniela 1981 ITA  1:29.69  +1.88  22.48
 16  20  537545 MANCUSO Julia 1984 USA  1:29.72  +1.91  22.84
 17  43  297702 MARSAGLIA Francesca 1990 ITA  1:30.05  +2.24  26.79
 18  41  296472 FANCHINI Elena 1985 ITA  1:30.13  +2.32  27.74
 19  33  56128 HUETTER Cornelia 1992 AUT  1:30.22  +2.41  28.82
 20  24  425929 MOWINCKEL Ragnhild 1992 NOR  1:30.35  +2.54  30.37
 21  28  297910 CURTONI Elena 1991 ITA  1:30.36  +2.55  30.49
 22  40  197295 PIOT Jennifer 1992 FRA  1:30.38  +2.57  30.73
 23  50  225206 ALCOTT Chemmy 1982 GBR  1:30.43  +2.62  31.33
 24  53  515806 JNGLIN-KAMER Nadja 1986 SUI  1:30.45  +2.64  31.57
 25  32  56177 VENIER Stephanie 1993 AUT  1:30.47  +2.66  31.81
 26  15  505886 KLING Kajsa 1988 SWE  1:30.64  +2.83  33.84
 27  25  515573 AUFDENBLATTEN Fraenzi 1981 SUI  1:30.74  +2.93  35.04
 28  13  515766 SUTER Fabienne 1985 SUI  1:30.77  +2.96  35.39
 29  47  539536 WILES Jacqueline 1992 USA  1:31.18  +3.37  40.30
 30  46  155563 KRIZOVA Klara 1989 CZE  1:31.19  +3.38  40.42
 31  37  516219 NUFER Priska 1992 SUI  1:31.26  +3.45  41.25
 32  12  538305 SMITH Leanne 1987 USA  1:31.32  +3.51  41.97
 33  7  105269 GAGNON Marie-Michele 1989 CAN  1:31.34  +3.53  42.21
 34  51  516248 FLURY Jasmine 1993 SUI  1:31.40  +3.59  42.93
 35  29  538573 ROSS Laurenne 1988 USA  1:31.84  +4.03  48.19
 36  48  485631 YAKOVISHINA Elena 1992 RUS  1:31.94  +4.13  49.39
Did not start 1st run
 57  665009 SHKANOVA Maria 1989 BLR
 36  515997 FEIERABEND Denise 1989 SUI
Did not finish 1st run
 56  375018 COLETTI Alexandra 1983 MON
 55  435245 CHRAPEK Karolina 1990 POL
 54  245066 MIKLOS Edit 1988 HUN
 52  538855 FORD Julia 1990 USA
 45  515782 KAUFMANN-ABDERHALDEN Marianne 1986 SUI
 44  55913 MOSER Stefanie 1988 AUT
 42  298694 PICHLER Karoline 1994 ITA
 39  298084 AGERER Lisa Magdalena 1991 ITA
 38  106825 PREFONTAINE Marie-Pier 1988 CAN
 35  296427 SCHNARF Johanna 1984 ITA
 34  56087 SIEBENHOFER Ramona 1991 AUT
 31  516319 SUTER Corinne 1994 SUI
 30  495318 RUIZ CASTILLO Carolina 1981 SPA
 27  55750 FISCHBACHER Andrea 1985 AUT
 26  55818 KOEHLE Stefanie 1986 AUT
 11  515747 GISIN Dominique 1985 SUI
 10  205218 REBENSBURG Viktoria 1989 GER
 4  505632 LINDELL-VIKARBY Jessica 1984 SWE
 2  425880 SEJERSTED Lotte Smiseth 1991 NOR

Geoff Mintz

Associate Editor

Geoff Mintz is a former alpine ski racer who cut his teeth at Ragged Mountain and Waterville Valley, N.H. After graduating from Holderness and UVM, he relocated to Colorado, where he worked as an instructor at Beaver Creek prior to pursuing a career in journalism. He currently lives in the woods above Vail with his wife, Colleen.

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