U.S. Women Set for Wildflower Downhill


Snowbasin, Utah Feb. 10, 2002 (USSA)--Picabo Street's (Park City, Utah) famed Olympic career will end Monday, not far from where it began in Sun Valley, Idaho, and there's only one way she wants to go out. She'll look to add another medal to her collection in the 10 a.m. women's downhill at Snowbasin Ski Area.

Street's competitors are strong and numerous, including teammates Jonna Mendes (Park City, Utah), Kirsten Clark (Olympic Valley, Calif.), who won her first downhill World Cup race in 2001 at Lenzerheide, Switzerland, and Caroline Lalive (Steamboat Springs, Colo.), who finished seventh in the combined at the 1998 Nagano Games.

"I think for sure it will be helpful that I don't have to hold back," Street said about competing solely in the downhill. "I can really risk everything I have to risk in those four days, especially on Monday. I'm going to just let it all hang out, because I have everything to gain and everything to lose at this point."

To win this year, the U.S. women will have to beat Germany's Hilde Gerg, Italy's Isolde Kostner and Austria's Michaela Dorfmeister.

The Wildflower course will put the women to the test with its maximum 58-degree slope and 2,319 foot vertical drop. Skiers have only one high-speed descent to post the fastest time.

The second and final women's training run was skied Sunday. Street, who won Saturday's training, led the U.S. again by finishing seventh. Austrians took the top two spots with Renate Goetschl winning and Michaela Dorfmeister taking second. Canadian Melanie Turgeon came in third.