FILE UNDER -- Alpine

Ludlow wins final spot in Soelden World Cup opener

Ludlow wins final spot in Soelden World Cup opener{mosimage}USSA — Libby Ludlow, who had the best results of her young World Cup career a year ago in downhill and super G, will get her first World Cup start in giant slalom in the season opener on the Rettenbach Glacier.

Patrick Riml, U.S. women’s head coach, said Ludlow won a time trial to earn the final spot in the opening GS Oct. 25 above Soelden, Austria. She’ll join veterans Sarah Schleper, Kristina Koznick, Kirsten Clark, Julia Mancuso and possibly Caroline Lalive, who is coming back from a downhill crash last season that broke two ribs, tore her right anterior cruciate ligament and injured her left knee. Lalive, training in Soelden with the U.S. women, will decide next week whether to race.

“Libby has been skiing very well,” Riml says, “and she won the time trial. So, she’ll start in the opening race.” A year ago, Ludlow — who has skied giant slalom throughout her career but found her best results in recent seasons in the speed events — grabbed her first top-25, then her first World Cup top-20s. “She’s showing confidence from last season,” Riml said. “She earned this start. Good for her.”

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