SERRE CHEVALIER, France (March 8 News Release) - The 2003 World Junior Championships came to a conclusion Saturday with the Americans collecting their fifth medal. Resi Stiegler (Jackson Hole, WY/Park City Ski Team/U.S. B Team) collected bronze in the combined, a calculation of downhill, slalom and giant slalom points. She was behind Germany's Maria Riesch and Austria's Michaela Kirchgasser, gold and silver respectively.
"It's been a great championships," said Patrick Riml, U.S. women's coach. "The whole week was awesome. We had a really strong team that did an awesome job throughout the week. The girls put their stuff together. They were up against a lot of competition from other countries and we have five medals now...
"It's awesome - we're the best women's team there. It's great; everyone did a good job and got good experience too.
The women swapped with the men and moved over to Serre Chevalier to race the giant slalom with another day of good conditions -- blue and sunny sky. Julia Mancuso (Olympic Valley, CA/Squaw Valley Ski Team/U.S. B Team) finished fifth and Stiegler was 11th for the top U.S. finishes.
"Julia did an awesome job. She made small mistakes that set her back but she knows what she's doing. She wasn't able to train a lot of giant slalom this year and spent a lot of time on the speed side; if she'd train more that may make a difference. Resi skied all four events and may have been a little tired."
Jeremy Transue (Hunter, NY; Green Mountain Valley School/U.S. Development Team) was the only American to finish in the men's slalom, placing 27th in Mont Genevre. Switzerland's Marc Berthod, who earned bronze in the downhill, captured his second medal for the week with a time of 1:33.74 for gold. Teammate Daniel Albrecht was 0.33 behind him for his third medal and Italy's Luca Senoner missed second by 0.06.
The U.S. juniors will resume racing at the NorAm Finals in Canada starting with the giant slalom Tuesday for the women at Panorama, BC, and Wednesday for the men at Nakiska, Alberta.