QA with U.S. skier Lindsey Kildow after her first World Cup podium


Q&A with U.S. skier Lindsey Kildow after her first World Cup podium{mosimage}Lindsey Kildow finished third in the second of two women’s World Cup downhills at Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, on Sunday. She was fifth in the first downhill the day before.

The third-place finish marks the first World Cup podium for the Minnesotan, who moved from Buck Hill to Vail, Colorado, as a youngster to pursue a multi-discipline ski racing career. Ski Racing caught up with Kildow on her coach’s cell phone as she and her teammates were leaving Cortina in their rented van.

Ski Racing: Your first World Cup podium. Congratulations. Tell us about it.
Lindsey Kildow: I skied really well. Yesterday was already a big step, finishing fifth. My goal was to be clean through those sections where I’d made mistakes yesterday, and I ended up winning those sections today. The whole day was awesome. It was so cool. I’m really happy.

SR: You ran 10th, and had to watch everyone come down after you. What was that like?
LK: At the finish, I didn’t know how long my time would hold up. But then, when I beat Hilde [Gerg, the previous day's winner], I realized what was up and it was like, “Oh s—.” I was crying in the finish. I was really happy. The awards ceremony was great. Everyone was there.

SR: Do you even remember your run?
LK: There was no inspection this morning, and they’d groomed the whole hill, so I was worried. I wanted to see it with my own eyes. Then it was snowing for the run, and that made the light really flat. But it was snowing consistently all day for everyone, so I know I didn’t have any advantage or disadvantage.

They’d moved the start down because of the wind, and that was good because it was really windy on the top for the training runs, and that can make a huge difference. Even if it’s just a couple tenths, that’s the difference between first and fourth.

SR: What was your first press conference like?
LK: I was really clueless. But Renate Goestchl was there and she’s done a lot and she ran the show and made it fun, by asking some of the questions for Montillet and stuff. They asked me a lot of questions like, “What does the middle initial in my name [it's C for Caroline] stand for,” and “Do you have any brothers and sisters?” They asked me how my day was, and did it feel good.

SR: How was your day and did it feel good?
LK: It was really hectic. We had to pack and move out of the hotel after awards and we were all hurrying out and I left my backpack at the hill.

SR: So, did they give you some cash?
LK: I got a check. It was smaller than normal, because they added some extra races here and they spread it out a little. It was for $8,000.

SR: What will you spend it on?
LK: A car. I’m saving up for a car.

SR: What kind of car do you want?
LK: An Audi. But it’ll have to be a used Audi.

SR: Why is your breakthrough coming now, on a course you hadn’t even skied on?
LK: I’m just relaxed now. I’m a lot smoother in building the pressure for the turn. Sometimes I’m a little too aggressive when I get in a race, and I jump on the ski too fast and make mistakes. Something just clicked in my head. Everyone has been telling me that I’m skiing well in training, and that I’ve been fast enough to do this, and today I believe it.

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