Are, Sweden, Mar. 8, 2001--Megan Gerety (Anchorage, AK), who was fifth in her first World Cup race in 1991, did it again Thursday, finishing fifthin the downhill as the World Cup Finals got underway in flat light and 25-degree weather. Hilde Gerg of Germany won the race and Italian IsoldeKostner won the DH title.
Outdoor Life Network will broadcast coverage of the women's DH tonight at 10 EST.
Gerg, the 1998 Olympic slalom champion who dropped slalom and GS this season to relieve the strain on a reconstructed knee, was timedin 1:16.56 with Kostner runnerup in 1:16.87. When defending World Cup champion Renate Goetschl of Austria skied out at midway throughher run, Kostner took the downhill title. With three races left, Goetschl 39 points back of Croatian Janica Kostelic.
Gerety was fifth with a time of 1:17.36 and Caroline Lalive (Steamboat Springs, CO) tied for ninth in 1:17.69. Jonna Mendes (Heavenly, CA)was 19th and Kirsten Clark (Raymond, ME), who won the last previous DH Feb. 24 in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, finished 21st.
"The girls skied well. We all knew that small mistakes would cost you because it's a short course and there's no place to make-uptime, but all of them were charging," said DH/SG Head Coach Jim Tracy. "I'm proud of 'em, the girls and the service crew andreps...everybody. It's been a great year and next season will be even better.
"It's too bad we didn't race Wednesday, as originally scheduled - until the men lost their training run Tuesday because it was a beautiful day,but that decision was out of our hands. Today, the light really got flat, but I was pleased to see Megan attacking," Tracy said, "because shedoesn't normally do well in flat light, but she let it go today; she's been fifth so many times and this was another one. I'm more disappointedabout not racing Wednesday than I am about anything today because they didn't hold back."
Clark will be the lone U.S. skier Friday in the women's super G before the schedule turns to the technical events for the weekend, slalomSaturday and giant slalom Sunday. The women's speed team heads home Saturday for a day or two of rest before the Chevy Truck SuperSeries next week with a World Cup-level field expected to get their first runs on the Olympic downhill course at Snowbasin, near Ogden, Utah."Most of these Europeans are planning on being there," Tracy said. And then come the Chevy Truck U.S. Alpine Championships, which beginMarch 23 at Big Mountain, MT.
CAFE de COLOMBIA WORLD CUP
World Cup Finals
Are, SWE - March 8
1. Hilde Gerg, Germany, 1:16.56
2. Isolde Kostner, Italy, 1:16.87
3. Sylviane Berthod, Switzerland, 1:16.97
4. Melanie Turgeon, Canada, 1:17.07
5. Megan Gerety, Anchorage, AK, 1:17.36
9. Caroline Lalive, Steamboat Springs, CO, 1:17.69
19. Jonna Mendes, Heavenly, CA, 1:18.15
21. Kirsten Clark, Raymond, ME, 1:18.21 Cafe de Colombia World Cup
Women's Overall (3 races remaining)
1. Janica Kostelic, Croatia - 1,196 points
2. Renate Goetschl, Austria - 1,157
3. Regine Cavagnoud, France - 1,027
4. Michaela Dorfmeister, Austria, 901
5. Kostner, 895
16. Kristina Koznick, Bunsville, MN, 349
19. Sarah Schleper, Vail, CO, 316
21. Lalive, 309
23. Clark, 285
28. Gerety, 271
36. Mendes, 190
67. Alison Powers, Winter Park, CO, 61
68. Picabo Street, Park City, UT, 59
113. Julia Mancuso, Tahoe City, CA, 9