Renate Goetschl wins downhill race and title at Finals; Julia Mancuso fourth


Renate Goetschl wins downhill race and title at Finals; Julia Mancuso fourthRenate Goetschl of Austria won the final World Cup downhill of the season today in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, wrapping up the title in that discipline. After a week of bad weather and training-run postponements, the sun came out and revealed a remarkably steep and turny course.

American Lindsey Kildow, who came into the race with a theoretical shot at winning the discipline title, was one of several racers not to finish. She crashed into the nets, high on the course, but walked away apparently unhurt. Her teammate Julia Mancuso finished fourth.

“It’s so steep, and there are huge turns compared to what we’re used to,” said Mancuso, after scoring her best-ever World Cup downhill result. “It’s definitely coming along. It’s just a matter of getting used to the speed and getting on my skis more. I didn’t get any downhill training this summer, but every race gets better. I’m excited to ski more [downhill] next year.”

As late as mid-January, Kildow was leading the downhill standings, but that was when Goetschl came on strong in mid-January at Cortina perhaps the Kitzbuehel of the women’s tour and established a lead. Coming into today’s race, Goetschl had a 32-point lead over Hilde Gerg of Germany (with Dorfmeister and Kildow still in mathematical, long-shot contention).

Gerg finished third today, and 72 points back in the standings. She has drafted the letter proposing that the Olympic super G for next season be moved to Sestriere, and she says the top 15 super G skiers have signed it.

Picabo Street of the United States won this title twice (in 1995 and 1996). Since then it has gone to Renate Goetschl of Austria three times (1997 and 1999 and 2004), Katja Seitzinger of Germany (1998), Regine Hausl of Germany (2000), Isolde Kostner of Italy (2001 and 2002) and Michaela Dorfmeister of Austria (2003).

Goetschl will give a press conference late this afternoon, following the men’s race (due to start at 2:45 C.E.T.). Quotes from that will be posted here. At the time of this posting, the men have finished inspection and are ready to begin their training run.

Click on these links to see results from each of this year’s World Cup downhills:
Lake Louise, CAN (winner: Lindsey Kildow, USA)
Lake Louise, CAN (winner: Hilde Gerg, GER)
Santa Caterina, ITA (winner: Michaela Dorfmeister, AUT)
Santa Caterina, ITA (winner: Ingrid Jaquemod, FRA)
Cortina, ITA (winner: Renate Goetschl, AUT)
Cortina, ITA (winner: Michaela Dorfmeister, AUT)
San Sicario, ITA (winner: Anja Paerson, SWE)
Lenzerheide, SUI (today) (winner: Renate Goetschl, AUT)

World Cup Finals

Women’s Downhill
Lenzerheide, Switzerland
March 10, 2005

1. Renate Goetschl, AUT 1:26.89
2. Ingrid Jacquemod, FRA 1:27.46
3. Hilde Gerg, GER 1:27.56
4. Janica Kostelic, CRO 1:27.73
4. Julia Mancuso, USA 1:27.73
6. Michaela Dorfmeister, AUT 1:28.15
7. Daniela Ceccarelli, ITA 1:28.25
8. Anja Paerson, SWE 1:28.31
9. Petra Haltmayr, GER 1:28.36
10. Martina Ertl, GER 1:28.40
11. Kirsten Clark, USA 1:28.54
12. Marlies Schild, AUT 1:28.73
13. Emily Brydon, CAN 1:28.91
14. Carole Montillet, FRA 1:29.22
15. Brigitte Obermoser, AUT 1:29.59
16. Nadia Styger, SUI 1:29.60
17. Fraenzi Aufdenblatten, SUI 1:29.83
18. Bryna McCarty, USA 1:29.87
19. Caroline Lalive, USA 1:30.05
20. Janette Hargin, SWE 1:30.82
21. Jessica Lindell, SWE 1:31.42
Other North Americans:
DNF: Lindsey Kildow, USA

THE SCOOP

By Hank McKee

equipment
Women’s Downhill, Lenzerheide, March 10, 2005
Skier, Skis/boots/bindings
1 Goetschl, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
2 Jacquemod, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
3 Gerg, Volkl/Lange/Marker
4 Kostelic, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
4 Mancuso, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
6 Dorfmeister, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
7 Ceccarelli, Dynastar/Lange/Look
8 Paerson, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
9 Haltmayr, Fischer/Lange/Atomic
10 Ertl, Rossignol/Nordica/Rossignol

Women’s Downhill, Lenzerheide, Switzerland, 3/10/2005. … It is the 30th competition of a 33 event women’s World Cup schedule. … The 8th of 8 scheduled downhills. … And the first race of the 2005 World Cup Finals. … The race was delayed one day by weather. … Women’s races remain in super G, GS and slalom. … A quarter of the field (6 of 28) did not complete the race. … The winning margin is more than a half second (.57). … The top five skiers are within the same second.

It is the 37th career victory for Renate Goetschl. … Her 19th in DH. … It is her fourth win of the season. … Second of the season in DH. … All three of her other wins came at Cortina d’Ampezzo in four days. … She is the career victory leader among active women.

It is the third career podium for Ingrid Jacquemod, all in DH. … It is her second podium of the season after a win at Santa Caterina 1/7. … Two of her three podiums have come in World Cup finals, the other a 2nd Lillehammer 3/12/2003.

It is the 59th career podium for Hilde Gerg. … Her 23rd in DH. … It is her 7th podium of the season. … 6th in DH.

It is the best DH result of the season for Julia Mancuso and matches her season’s best Cup result (4th). … She also collected two bronze medals at World Championships. … Her other fourths were in GS at Santa Caterina and at Are. … Kirsten Clark matched her third best result of the season in 11th. … It was the 6th best result of the season for Bryna McCarty, though she gains no points by Finals rule only the top 15 score. … It is the 16th top 30 Cup result of the season for Caroline Lalive. … It is the 14th scoring result of the season for Emily Brydon.

Anja Paerson (8th in race) maintains the lead in the overall standings, but gives up ground to Janica Kostelic (tied for 4th). … Paerson leads by 45 points, 1273-1228. … Lindsey Kildow (DNF) is the top U.S. skier on the overall list in 6th with 828pts. … Julia Mancuso moves into the top 10, ranking 9th with 598. … Renate Goetschl of Austria wins the women’s Downhill title 567-495 over Hilde Gerg. … Kildow is the top U.S. skier in 5th with 384pts. … It is the fourth DH title for Goetschl and second consecutive. … She matches Katja Seizinger and Michela Figini with 4 DH titles. … Annemarie Moser-Proell had 7. … Goetschl has now won 6 discipline titles (DH ’97, ’99, ’04 and ’05; SG ’02 and ’04 and also led the final combined standings in ’00).

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