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Mancuso 2nd in SG, Up to 3rd Overall
CORTINA D'AMPEZZO, Italy (Jan. 20) -
Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) was fifth and held onto her No. 2 spot in the standings.Maria Holaus of Austria won the super G with a time of 1:24.63 over the 2.3K run. Mancuso's fifth podium of the season came in 1:23.83. Defending World Cup overall champion Nicole Hosp of Austria finished third in 1:24.91. Vonn's time was 1:24.93 and Stacey Cook (Mammoth Mountain, CA) was 13th (1:25.42) in the sunny 40-degree weather.
photo US Ski Team
After 20 races, Hosp leads the overall points with 759. Vonn is second at 683 with Mancuso third at 639.
"It's been warm and the snow got wet in sections, and the track was getting a little sticky," Downhill/Super G Head Coach Alex Hoedlmoser said. "It was definitely better for the early numbers. The light changed when the top group [bibs 16-22] went after the TV break. There was some cloud cover and flat light for that top group, which is why some didn't ski it that good - but Jules and Lindsey handled it well." Holaus started No. 1; Mancuso ran 19th and Vonn 20th.
Mancuso: flat light was no problem
"Really, it didn't bother me that much," Mancuso said. "I love Cortina, and I really love the super G. We had flat light yesterday [in downhill] and the day before in training, so maybe I just got used to it."
Mancuso was seventh Friday as Vonn won the downhill. Coach Patrick Riml said if she cleaned up a couple of slight mistakes, she would be on Sunday's podium. "I re-centered. I went back to basics. In super G, it's all about charging," she said.
"I knew I had to do my best and it ended up being pretty good. I skied well - made a couple of small mistakes but even as I was racing I thought, 'Wow, this is really softer [snow surface] than when we inspected.' I'm psyched to make the podium."
She has an outstanding mark on the 1956 Olympic mountain over recent seasons: In 2006, she prepped for the upcoming Olympics - where she would win the giant slalom gold medal - by posting her first top-3 result in the super G, despite steady snowfall. Last year, she won the Cortina SG.
Mancuso: "Cortina has it all"
"There's so much different terrain here. A lot of super Gs aren't really that varied, but Cortina has it all. It gets fast in some sections, there are little jumps and rolls, and it changes direction a lot. It's so much more interesting with the terrain and the flow with the course," she said.
Hoedlmoser pointed to the closeness of the race. "Holaus took advantage of the sunshine and the good conditions, and that's fine. And Jules did a good job. She executed so nicely and with that light, she was pretty much at maximum performance. But then it was so close - Lindsey two-hundredths out of third, just a hundredth out of fourth.
"And very good for Stacey. She was down yesterday about being 27th in the downhill. But she did a good job of pulling herself out of that slump."
The racing schedule concludes Monday in Cortina with a super G, originally scheduled for the Audi Aspen Winternational six weeks ago in Colorado. It was rescheduled for Cortina, but heavy snow last week forced postponing the race so the women could hold a downhill training run Friday.
For photos from this race click here.
Audio and video of the U.S. Ski Team in Cortina is available here.
2008 AUDI FIS ALPINE WORLD CUP
Cortina d'Ampezzo, ITA - Jan. 20,2008
Women's Super G
1. Maria Holaus, Austria, 1:24.63
2. Julia Mancuso, Olympic Valley, CA, 1:24.83
3. Nicole Hosp, Austria, 1:24.91
4. Emily Brydon, Canada, 1:24.92
5. Lindsey Vonn, Vail, CO, 1:24.93
13. Stacey Cook, Mammoth Mountain, CA, 1:25.42
35. Libby Ludlow, Bellevue, WA, 1:26.72
39. Leanne Smith, Conway, NH, 1:27.13
42. Megan McJames, Park City, UT, 1:27.42
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07. April 267
and becoming the first woman to win Olympic Gold At Sydney 2000