Goetschl extends World Cup overall lead | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Goetschl extends World Cup overall lead

IGLS, Austria – Austrian Renate Goetschl boosted her overall World Cup lead on a course countryman Franz Klammer made famous, beating Canadian Melanie Turgeon in Sunday’s World Cup super-G.

Goetschl, who won Friday’s downhill, and was second behind Turgeon Saturday in another super-G, won in an unofficial time of 1 minute, 33.42 seconds.

Turgeon finished in 1:33.58. Mojca Suhadolc of Slovenia was in third with a 1:33.62 clocking, with Italy’s Isolde Kostner fourth (1:33.64) and Elena Tagliabue, also from Italy, fifth (1:33.82).

Jonna Mendes (Heavenly) was the only U.S. skier to finish the race and was 19th with a time of 1:34.63. Kirsten Clark (Raymond, Maine), Alison Powers (Winter Park, Colo.) and Caroline Lalive (Steamboat Springs, Colo.) were among the 13 skiers who failed to finish the race.

Canadian Turgeon Wins Austrian World Cup SG

IGLS, Austria – Canadian Melanie Turgeon, who has battled inconsistency and frustration since winning five medals at the 1994 World Junior Championships, won a World Cup super- G Saturday.

Kate Pace won a downhill at Tignes to open the ’94 season, the first super-G win by a Canadian woman since Lisa Saavijarvi won at Furano at the end of the 1986 season.

The top U.S. result came from Kirsten Clark (Raymond, Maine), who was 20th with a time of 1:33.17. Jonna Mendes (Heavenly) was 26th in 1:33.92 with Caroline Lalive (Steamboat Springs, Colo.) 34th in 1:34.58. Alison Powers (Winter Park, Colo.) didn’t finish.

INNSBRUCK, Austria – Alison Powers of Winter Park, Colo., outbattled softening snow and a late start spot Friday to collect the first World Cup points of her career with a 29th-place finish.

Kirsten Clark of Raymond, Maine, was top American, finishing 28th with a time of 1:36.74. Next was Powers, who came out of the 42nd start and finished in 1:36.97. Jonna Mendes (Heavenly) in 30th at 1:37.03.

Stephenson and Fischer pick up Super Series DH wins at Snowbasin

OGDEN, Utah – Wisi Betschart, a Heavenly Ski Foundation product, was 10th in the first of two downhill Super Series Finals Saturday at Snowbasin.

Geoffrey Stephenson of Wilson, Wyo., posted the fastest time of the afternoon to win the first of two downhills. Brett Fischer of Winter Park, Colo., won by a slim margin in the second race.

Betschart’s time was 1.59 seconds slower than Stephenson’s winning time in the opening race.

Sullivan Takes World Junior Bronze

LE RELAIS, Que. – Marco Sullivan of Tahoe City earned the first medal for U.S. skiers Friday at the World Junior Alpine Championships, collecting the bronze in slalom at LeRelais Ski Area.

Sullivan, the 1999 Sprint Ski Racing Junior Skier of the Year, is coming back from a separated collarbone, tweaked knee and concussion a month ago. He’s gotten stronger with every race at World juniors this week, and led the first run at LeRelais, only to be almost undone by a course that was dissolving under his feet.

When officials went to flip-30 for the second run, the last racers found a badly rutted course with holes in the snow. Sullivan fought his way through one rut that almost pitched him over, and survived a hole before turning up the heat to preserve a medal.

“I was lucky to stay in the course,” he said at the bottom. “I got ’em sideways up there.”

Daniel Defago of Switzerland won the gold medal with a time of 1:52.95 with Austrian Mattias Lenzinger collecting the silver medal in 1:53.49. Sullivan, who still managed to hang up the 18th-fastest time of the second run, finished in 1:53.68.

In the women’s GS at Stoneham, Swedish World Cup racer Anja Paerson successfully defended the title she won a year ago at the World Juniors in France. Her winning time was 1:55.08, nearly 1.45 seconds ahead of Spanish racer Carolina Ruiz-Castillo with Petra Knor adding one more medal to the Austrian haul as she finished third (1:56.73).

Julia Mancuso of Tahoe City was seventh in the first run, but skied off the course on her second run.

Bergoust posts record score in Italy

PIANCAVALLO, Italy – Olympic aerials champion and world record-holder Eric Bergoust re-set his own mark for the highest-scoring World Cup performance for the third time in winning his first World Cup in two years.

Bergoust, of Missoula, Mont., won the Goodwill Games aerials event against a world-class field Feb. 19 but hadn’t won a World Cup event since Blackcomb in January 1998 – shortly before his Olympic triumph. He completed two quad-twisting triples (four twists, three flips) and received 257.21 points from the judges. That bumped the record he set at the ’98 Olympics by more than a point and a half.

In the first World Cup aerials meet in Kirchberg, Austria, in early 1996, Bergoust set the mark of 247.51 points. A year later, Canadian Nicolas Fontaine topped Bergoust, upping the record to 254.98 points, as he won the gold medal with Bergoust silver at the ’97 World Championships in Japan. At the Olympics, Bergoust reclaimed the record as he grabbed the gold medal with two jumps worth 255.64 points. He won the aerials gold medal at the ’99 World Championships, and had a perfect score on one of his jumps, but he scored “only” 253.04 points in that one; that score would have been second Saturday night in Piancavallo.

“I’m psyched,” Bergoust said of his 10th career World Cup win. “I haven’t won a World Cup since the Olympics. The landing hill was brutally hard, but they softened it with their bodies. By evening, the landing hill was great.”

Despite his latest record-busting show, Bergoust does not qualify to compete in the World Cup Finals in mid-March. The World Cup Finals are limited to the top 10 aerialists and, with his four missed events, Bergoust stands No. 12.

Second place went to Canadian Steve Omischl, who had 251.61 points, with Joe Pack of Park City, Utah, in third place at 250.92.

In the women’s event, defending world champion and World Cup champ Jacqui Cooper – the runaway World Cup leader this season, too – earned her fourth victory of the winter. She had 185.54 points to 177.51 for Veronica Brenner of Canada. Brenda Petzold of Andover, Mass., who third behind Brenner in the recent Goodwill Games event in Lake Placid, was sixth with Kelly Hilliman (Tonawanda, N.Y.) 10th.

NAGANO, Japan – As snowboarders returned to the venue of their Olympic debut, Canadian Jasey Jay Anderson and Italian Margherita Parini won a World Cup giant slalom Saturday.

After a week of heavy snow at Mount Yakebitai, race organizers had their hands full in preparing the Yakebitaiyama course just in time for Saturday’s races. Crews worked around the clock and cold temperatures lent a hand in packing the course.

Anderson posted a winning time of 1:59.39, good for his first World Cup GS win GS. France’s Nicolas Huet (1:59.95) and Austrian Stefan Kaltschuetz (2:00.14) followed. Americans Rob Berney (Whitefish, Mont.) and Chris Klug (Aspen, Colo.) finished fifth and sixth, respectively.

It was sweet revenge for Anderson, who led after the first run but dropped out in the second two years ago at the Olympics.

“One of the reasons I came to Japan was to take revenge on this hill,” Anderson said. “It’s a lot off my shoulders. I can sleep at night now. Now I can think 2002, I’m all set.”

Parini, who took the lead in the GS standings, was fastest with a time of 2:07.86. France’s Isabelle Blanc was second in 2:08.95 and Austrian Manuela Riegler was third with a time of 2:09.19. The top American woman was Rosey Fletcher of Girdwood, Alaska, who finished sixth. U.S. Snowboard Team rider Sondra Van Ert of Ketchum, Idaho, who won the super-G last week at the Goodwill Games, did not finish her second run.

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