Switzerland’s Bruhin wins parallel GS | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Switzerland’s Bruhin wins parallel GS

KREISCHBERG, Austria — World Cup leader Ursula Bruhin of Switzerland proved why she’s on top Monday by defending her parallel giant slalom crown at the FIS World Snowboarding Championships over Julie Pomagalski of France.

German Heidi Renoth was third, while Stacia Hookom of Edwards, Colo., posted the best American finish by claiming eighth after qualifying fourth.

Teammates Lisa Kosglow of Boulder, Colo., and Rosey Fletcher OF Girdwood, Alaska, also qualified for the final — top 16 of 56 starters — with Kosglow posting the second-fastest time at 50.40 behind Karine Ruby of France.

“Three in the finals is great,” said U.S. coach Peter Foley. “But we just couldn’t put it together. We all were looking at the podium after the qualifier, but it didn’t work out that way.”

Fridged temperatures finally broke in the afternoon, but conditions remained ideal for the riders, who hailed the snow as “epic.” However the temperatures didn’t bode so well for the U.S. as both Kosglow and Fletcher fell just before the finish during the first round of finals.

On Sunday, the first medal of the championships went to Slovenian Dejan Kosir, who captured the men’s parallel giant slalom.

Olympic medalist Chris Klug of Aspen, Colo., had the top U.S. performance, finishing seventh, with Pete Thorndike of Meredith, N.H. in 11th place in sub-zero cold.

The surprise silver medalist was Simon Schoch of Switzerland, who knocked off Klug in the semifinals. Nicolas Huet of France was third and World Cup leader Mathieu Bozzetto of France was fourth. Eric Warren of Bennington, Vt., was 23rd and Ryan McDonald of Entiat, Wash., 29th in the field of 83 riders.

“All of our guys were really tentative coming out of the gate. They weren’t sure about the snow for the first three or four gates,” said U.S. Alpine coach Nick Smith said, “but when they saw it was good, they picked it up and rode more aggressively.”

World Championship action continues today with men’s PSL.

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