American Cook tops the field in downhill training | PostIndependent.com
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American Cook tops the field in downhill training

Shauna Farnell
Special to the Daily
Lara Gut
Townsend Bessent | Townsend@vaildaily.com |

Women’s World Championship Downhill training results

Monday, Feb. 2, Beaver Creek

1 COOK Stacey USA 01:48.2

2 GUT Lara SUI 01:48.2 0.09

2 MOWINCKEL Ragnhild NOR 01:48.2 0.09

4 VONN Lindsey USA 01:48.8 0.62

4 SUTER Fabienne SUI 01:48.8 0.62

6 WEIRATHER Tina LIE 01:49.0 0.8

7 ROSS Laurenne USA 01:49.1 0.94

8 MAZE Tina SLO 01:49.3 1.18

9 HOSP Nicole AUT 01:49.4 1.25

10 SCHMIDHOFER Nicole AUT 01:49.5 1.36

11 FENNINGER Anna AUT 01:49.7 1.56

12 STUHEC Ilka SLO 01:49.7 1.58

13 MANCUSO Julia USA 01:50.3 2.17

14 MCKENNIS Alice USA 01:50.4 2.23

15 BAILET Margot FRA 01:50.4 2.25

16 REBENSBURG Viktoria GER 01:50.6 2.48

17 FANCHINI Nadia ITA 01:50.7 2.54

18 YURKIW Larisa CAN 01:50.9 2.7

19 KLING Kajsa SWE 01:50.9 2.76

20 FANCHINI Elena ITA 01:51.0 2.79

21 NUFER Priska SUI 01:51.3 3.13

22 JNGLIN-KAMER Nadja SUI 01:51.4 3.26

23 JAY MARCHAND-ARVIER Marie FRA 01:51.5 3.3

24 MIKLOS Edit HUN 01:51.7 3.52

25 MARSAGLIA Francesca ITA 01:51.9 3.7

26 PIOT Jennifer FRA 01:52.3 4.12

26 GOERGL Elisabeth AUT 01:52.3 4.12

28 SCHNARF Johanna ITA 01:52.3 4.15

29 TVIBERG Maria Therese NOR 01:52.4 4.22

30 WORLEY Tessa FRA 01:52.5 4.35

31 GAGNON Marie-Michele CAN 01:52.7 4.55

32 BRODNIK Vanja SLO 01:52.8 4.62

33 KRIZOVA Klara CZE 01:52.8 4.63

34 HRONEK Veronique GER 01:53.4 5.2

35 ABDERHALDEN Marianne SUI 01:53.5 5.37

36 RUIZ CASTILLO Carolina SPA 01:54.1 5.93

37 COLETTI Alexandra MON 01:54.4 6.2

38 GRENIER Valerie CAN 01:54.7 6.55

39 MERIGHETTI Daniela ITA 01:55.0 6.83

40 CURTONI Elena ITA 01:55.0 6.85

41 SMALL Greta AUS 01:55.3 7.12

42 SIMARI BIRKNER Macarena ARG 01:56.1 7.96

43 BARAHONA Noelle CHI 01:56.5 8.32

44 POPOVIC Leona CRO 01:57.9 9.74

45 BUCIK Ana SLO 01:59.5 11.38

46 KOMSIC Andrea CRO 02:00.2 12.04

CAILL Ania Monica ROU DNS

KIRCHGASSER Michaela AUT DNS

ZETTEL Kathrin AUT DNS

WILES Jacqueline USA DNS

HUETTER Cornelia AUT DNF

BEAVER CREEK — After a two-and-a-half hour start delay, the first event of the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships got under way in strong, swirling wind at Beaver Creek on Monday.

Four inches of fresh snow greeted the women for their first downhill training run, which was pushed back from its original 11 a.m. start time to 1:30 p.m.

American veteran Stacey Cook put down the fastest training time, finishing in 1 minute, 48.16 seconds, followed by Norwegian Ragnhild Mowinckel and Swiss racer Lara Gut, both 0.09 seconds back. Although the women said the snow had been cleared off the course and didn’t slow things down too much, the wind — averaging speeds around 45 mph — was most definitely a factor.

“It was really windy. We didn’t have that last time,” said Gut, who won the 2013 World Cup downhill at Beaver Creek by nearly a half second and also the 2013 super-G by nearly a full second. She says the course is almost the same as it was, with less aggressive snow, than during her Beaver Creek speed sweep in 2013.

“There’s just a few gates a little more straight and a few gates more turny, but the course is pretty similar to what we had last November,” Gut said. “The slope is in great shape. It’s not so difficult as it looks. You have to be confident, stay on your skis and try to push on every gate.”

Wind, wind and more wind

Cook, who has had three second-place World Cup downhill finishes — all in Lake Louise, Alberta — and who will be competing in her fifth World Championships, is hungry for her first medal. But she didn’t put much stock in Monday’s training result.

“I wouldn’t look at the times too much because it’s so windy up top,” Cook said. I don’t think they would have run a race in that kind of wind. So I’m not really looking at the scoreboard.”

Gut said that she held back a little due to the wind and will have more to give in Tuesday’s super-G and Friday’s downhill race.

“I just tried to ski clean, this was my goal, to ski the way I can,” she said. “I don’t think it’s the most important thing to go 100 percent for the first training.”

Mowinckel, whose top World Cup result is a fifth place in December’s giant slalom in Kuehtai in Tirol, Austria, and who finished eight in the 2013 giant slalom at Beaver Creek and has a pair of top 10s in super G, wasn’t holding back and surprised herself with her second-place finish.

After Gut and Mowinckel came Lindsey Vonn and Swiss veteran Fabienne Suter, who finished the training run in 1:48.78, 0.62 seconds off of Cook’s lead pace.

“You have to be on the line and you have to attack. You have to find a good mix between these two things,” said Suter, who finished fourth in the 2013 Beaver Creek downhill race, just 0.06 seconds off of the podium. “It’s not an easy course. To win here or get a medal you have to be … how do you say in English? Fearless.”

Wrapping up the top 10 in Monday’s downhill training was Lichtenstein’s Tina Weirather (who finished second on the Raptor downhill course in the 2013 World Cup) in sixth, American Laurenne Ross in seventh, World Cup overall leader Tina Maze from Slovenia in eighth, Austrian veteran Nicole Hosp in ninth and her compatriot Nicole Schmidhofer in 10th.


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