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Gorgone third in La Molina
LA MOLINA, Spain (March 15) - Michelle Gorgone (Boston) made it two World Cup podium finishes for the season Sunday as she took third during a parallel giant slalom in Spain.
"This is for sure a happy day. I am super excited to be on the podium I would have loved to have won it, but it's great," Gorgone said.
photo FIS Oliver Kraus
The course in Spain met athletes with a challenge of 10 steep gates and 12 flat gates. Conditions early on in the competition were steep and hard for the qualifiers but softened up for the finals.
"The race probably started out more challenging than it ended up. It was super hard in the morning and in my first qualifier I was a little tentative. I did a little better in the second run and made my way into the finals," said Gorgone who qualified fourth. "In the finals I was winning runs all day today, but crashed against Marion Kreiner [Austria] to end up in the small final for third."
But all was not lost as Gorgone picked up something extra from finishing third on the podium.
"And I won a ham," Gorgone said. "I brought home the bacon, so it was great."
In the men's race, Jasey Jay Anderson of Canada won. No U.S. men made finals.
For Gorgone, who started out the year second in a parallel slalom in Switzerland, Sunday's finish rounds out the 2009 season.
"I feel like I've been riding well all season. Maybe there was a little bit of a slump in the middle of the season where I wasn't getting the results I could have," Gorgone said. "So, it's good to be back on the podium where I started out the season. It's kind of come full circle."
Gorgone's podium wraps up the World Cup in Spain where U.S. athletes were on the podium in each event with Louie Vito (Sandy, UT) second and Steve Fisher (Breckenridge, CO) and Elena Hight (South Lake Tahoe, CA) third in halfpipe, and Lindsey Jacobellis (Stratton Mountain, VT) first and Nick Baumgartner (Iron River, MI) second in snowboardcross.
Athletes now head to Valmalenco, Italy March 19-22 where they will compete in the final World Cup of the season.
"I'm excited to get to Italy," Gorgone said. "I did well there last year and I like the hill. Hopefully it's another sunny race."
LG FIS SNOWBOARD WORLD CUP
La Molina, Spain - March 15, 2009
Parallel Giant Slalom
1. Amelie Kober, Germany
2. Marion Keriner, Austria
3. Michelle Gorgone, Boston
4. Ina Meschik, Austria
5. Nicolien Sauerbreij, Netherlands