Schild survives Riesch second-run attack to win second consecutive slalom in Semmering


Thousands of Austrian ski racing fans who made the hour drive from Vienna to Semmering for today’s (Dec. 29) women’s World Cup night slalom got what they came for – an exciting race and an Austrian victor. Mariles Schild collected her third win of the season as fans produced a defining amount of encouragement .

Schild, in the red slalom leader’s bib, was just the second racer out of the start house and set the tone with a first-run time that was 1.20 seconds faster than any other. Her only real competition in the second run came from a racer that was both surprising and not surprising at all. Overall World Cup leader, German Maria Riesch made a huge mistake at the bottom of her first run that caused her to slip to the 17th position at half time. An attacking, risky second run from the six-foot-tall, two-time Olympic champion took her to the leaders circle through the next 15 racers until Schild appeared in the start and the boisterous crowed of 14,000 rang bells, lit flares and shouted for all it was worth.

Schild, the last racer down the course, edged Riesch by 0.32 seconds of combined time for her second consecutive World Cup slalom win (she also won last week in Courchevel, France) and her third of the season after opening the slalom tour with a win in Levi.

“It’s my third victory now here, this is an amazing feeling,” said Schild, who won World Cup GS and slalom races here in 2004. “I wanted to win this race, I knew that I had a lot of advantage and I had some really hard problems in the upper part so I just wanted to ski down. It’s very special, it’s a great audience.”

German Christina Geiger grabbed the last podium spot, 0.52 seconds back with a combined time of 1:42.38. It was the 20-year-old, Junior World Championships gold medalist’s best career finish, her previous high came in 2009 with eighth-place finishes in both Aspen and Lienz. Geiger also performed some second-run heroics putting down the third-fastest second run to jump from seventh in the first run. 

Riesch’s second run was fastest second run by almost a full second (0.97) and was enough to earn her 49th career World Cup podium and a 121-point advantage on American Lindsey Vonn in the overall standings. She also finished second in yesterday’s GS.  

“It was great days for me, being on the podium twice in Semmering makes me really happy,” Riesch told Fisalpine.com. “It’s important when you want to go for the overall podium that you’re consistent. Sometimes some mistakes are happening like the first run in the slalom, but still, with this end result, I’m really, really happy.”

Just missing the podium was World Cup veteran Tanja Poutianen in fourth place, 0.63 seconds off the winning pace.     

It was a tough day for the American team. After Vonn fell at the top of the first run and Julia Mancuso, Resi Stiegler and Hailey Duke didn’t qualify for a second run, it was all on Sarah Schleper who charged to ninth-place in the first run. The second run was going great for the Vail, Colo. native, who was 0.27 seconds in the lead at the second-to-last split when she skied off course. She stuck with it, hiking for several seconds up to the missed gate and finished 28th, 24.18 seconds behind the winner.  

“It’s very, very disappointing because [Schleper] would have been on the podium easily today,” said U.S. women’s head coach Alex Hoedlmoser. “She was here to race and be on the podium and not just top 30 and that is how she skied – fantastic. She shouldn’t be disappointed because she knows she has the speed to be on the podium again.”

Canadians Erin Mielzynski and Eve Routhier notched scoring results in 20th and 23rd, respectively. The result marked Mielzynski’s career high in a World Cup race. Brittany Phelan, Narie-Michele Gagnon and Anna Goodman all failed to qualify for the second run.

The women’s and men’s World Cup tours will converge next week at a special parallel slalom race in downtown Munich, Germany Jan. 2.

The SCOOP
By Hank McKee

Women’s World Cup slalom, Semmering, Austria, Dec. 29, 2010
Skier, skis/boots/bindings
1 Schild, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
2 Riesch, Head/Lange/Head
3 Geiger, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
4 Poutiainen, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer
5 Borssen, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer
6 Noens, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
7 Kirchgasser, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
7 Zettel, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
9 Zuzulova, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
10 Zahrobska, Head/Head/Head

Women’s World Cup slalom, Semmering, Austria, Dec. 29, 2010. … It is the 14th race of the women’s 37 race 2010-2011 World Cup season, the 13th to be held. … It is the fourth of ten scheduled slaloms with three more scheduled by Jan. 16. … It is the 18th Cup race hosted by Semmering. … the 11th slalom.

Winning margin is .32 of a second. … top five skiers are within the same second. … It is the 27th career World Cup win for Marlies Schild. … Her 24th in slalom. … It is her third win at Semmering having swept the slalom and GS Dec. 29, 2004. … It is her third victory of the season all in slalom and second straight.

It is the 49th career World Cup podium result for Maria Riesch. … her 17th in slalom. … It is her third podium at Semmering, and second in two days having also placed second in the GS. … It is her seventh podium of the season all of them first or second place results coming in four different disciplines.

It is a career first World Cup podium for Christina Geiger among 11 Cup scoring results, all in slalom.

It is a career best Cup result for Erin Mielzynski and just her second, the first coming at Aspen in slalom last season. … It is the second career scoring result for Eve Routhier, her first coming at Aspen in slalom this season. … Sarah Schleper will not receive points for her 28th place finish as she was too far behind the winner’s time.

Riesch pads her lead of the World Cup overall standings to 738-617 over Lindsey Vonn (DNF 1st in race). … Tanja Poutiainen (4th in race) is third overall with 430pts. … Marie-Michele Gagnon (did not qualify for 2nd run) is the top Canadian overall in 21st place with 130pts. … Schild leads the slalom standings 300-250 over Poutiainen with Riesch third at 240. … Vonn is the top American in the slalom rankings in 13th with 72pts. … Gagnon leads the Canadians in 24th place with 31pts. … Austria leads the women’s Nations Cup 1960-1692 over Germany. … The U.S. is third with 1213pts. … Canada is 10th with 196pts.

Rank Bib FIS Code Name Year Nation Run 1 Run 2 Total Time FIS Points
 1  2  55590 SCHILD Marlies  1981  AUT   48.78  53.28  1:42.06  0.00
 2  5  206001 RIESCH Maria  1984  GER   51.18  51.20  1:42.38  1.91
 3  9  206279 GEIGER Christina  1990  GER   50.39  52.19  1:42.58  3.11
 4  1  185140 POUTIAINEN Tanja  1980  FIN   50.05  52.64  1:42.69  3.77
 5  23  505610 BORSSEN Therese  1984  SWE   50.70  52.19  1:42.89  4.96
 6  12  196806 NOENS Nastasia  1988  FRA   49.98  53.18  1:43.16  6.57
 7  25  55759 KIRCHGASSER Michaela  1985  AUT   51.05  52.35  1:43.40  8.01
 7  6  55838 ZETTEL Kathrin  1986  AUT   50.27  53.13  1:43.40  8.01
 9  22  705287 ZUZULOVA Veronika  1984  SVK   50.76  52.82  1:43.58  9.08
 10  4  155415 ZAHROBSKA Sarka  1985  CZE   50.25  54.04  1:44.29  13.33
 11  24  505679 HANSDOTTER Frida  1985  SWE   52.22  52.17  1:44.39  13.93
 12  11  205168 DUERR Katharina  1989  GER   51.01  53.49  1:44.50  14.58
 13  40  506341 WIKSTROEM Emelie  1992  SWE   51.88  52.69  1:44.57  15.00
 14  53  355040 NIGG Marina  1984  LIE   51.04  53.56  1:44.60  15.18
 15  13  206160 RIESCH Susanne  1987  GER   50.21  54.44  1:44.65  15.48
 16  29  56032 SCHILD Bernadette  1990  AUT   51.34  53.32  1:44.66  15.54
 17  8  206035 CHMELAR Fanny  1985  GER   51.80  52.95  1:44.75  16.08
 18  44  196928 WORLEY Tessa  1989  FRA   51.97  52.81  1:44.78  16.26
 19  26  185271 LEINONEN Sanni  1989  FIN   51.65  53.34  1:44.99  17.51
 20  50  106961 MIELZYNSKI Erin  1990  CAN   52.22  53.01  1:45.23  18.95
 21  7  195972 AUBERT Sandrine  1982  FRA   51.33  54.11  1:45.44  20.20
 22  21  385032 JELUSIC Ana  1986  CRO   51.73  53.88  1:45.61  21.22
 23  42  105615 ROUTHIER Eve  1988  CAN   51.97  53.81  1:45.78  22.23
 24  17  55576 GOERGL Elisabeth  1981  AUT   51.17  54.85  1:46.02  23.67
 25  27  296354 COSTAZZA Chiara  1984  ITA   51.10  54.96  1:46.06  23.91
 26  69  297171 FANCHINI Sabrina  1988  ITA   52.16  54.52  1:46.68  27.61
 27  20  295435 GIUS Nicole  1980  ITA   51.76  1:06.71  1:58.47  98.08
 28  32  536481 SCHLEPER Sarah  1979  USA   50.73  1:15.51  2:06.24  144.52
Disqualified 1st run
   51  196179 BERTRAND Marion  1984  FRA         
Did not start 1st run
   70  106825 PREFONTAINE Marie-Pier  1988  CAN         
   18  205993 HOELZL Kathrin  1984  GER         
Did not qualify 1st run
   68  385041 NOVOSELIC Sofija  1990  CRO         
   67  565333 BRODNIK Vanja  1989  SLO         
   66  305944 KIYOSAWA Emiko  1983  JPN         
   64  155194 KURFUERSTOVA Eva  1977  CZE         
   63  65038 PERSYN Karen  1983  BEL         
   60  297601 BRIGNONE Federica  1990  ITA         
   57  565268 DREV Ana  1985  SLO         
   56  206355 DUERR Lena  1991  GER         
   55  516280 HOLDENER Wendy  1993  SUI         
   54  537792 DUKE Hailey  1985  USA         
   52  506146 SWENN-LARSSON Anna  1991  SWE         
   49  55977 THALMANN Carmen  1989  AUT         
   48  515587 PUENCHERA Jessica  1982  SUI         
   46  196726 BARTHET Anne-Sophie  1988  FRA         
   43  206099 PERNER Nina  1986  GER         
   41  515692 GRAND Rabea  1984  SUI         
   39  107068 PHELAN Brittany  1991  CAN         
   37  196725 BARIOZ Taina  1988  FRA         
   36  537772 STIEGLER Resi  1985  USA         
   35  515619 GINI Sandra  1982  SUI         
   34  515997 FEIERABEND Denise  1989  SUI         
   33  206290 HUEBNER Monica  1990  GER         
   31  537545 MANCUSO Julia  1984  USA         
   30  105269 GAGNON Marie-Michele  1989  CAN         
   28  106633 GOODMAN Anna  1986  CAN         
   16  505483 PAERSON Anja  1981  SWE         
Did not finish 2nd run
   10  565243 MAZE Tina  1983  SLO         
   3  505760 PIETILAE-HOLMNER Maria  1986  SWE         
Did not finish 1st run
   73  35089 SIMARI BIRKNER Macarena  1984  ARG         
   72  35079 SIMARI BIRKNER Maria Belen  1982  ARG         
   71  435210 GASIENICA DANIEL Agnieszka  1987  POL         
   65  56059 DEPAULI Jessica  1991  AUT         
   62  206444 HOESL Simona  1992  GER         
   61  306249 HASEGAWA Emi  1986  JPN         
   59  55914 NOESIG Michaela  1988  AUT         
   58  196803 MOUGEL Laurie  1988  FRA         
   47  196793 MARMOTTAN Anemone  1988  FRA         
   45  516005 HANGL Celina  1989  SUI         
   38  296509 CURTONI Irene  1985  ITA         
   19  296259 MOELGG Manuela  1983  ITA         
   15  55690 HOSP Nicole  1983  AUT         
   14  537544 VONN Lindsey  1984  USA         

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