Suspense was at a minimum as Tina Maze kicked out of the second leg of the super combined start in Meribel, France on Sunday.
After winning the downhill in the morning and with a 1.25-second advantage over then-leader Nicole Hosp, Maze skied a quick upper part of the course and a conservative lower half to go two-for-two in World Cup super combines this season.
Maze’s best competition was probably SC World Champion Maria Hoefl-Riesch, who was third in the morning’s downhill and on pace for a good slalom performance, but got chucked into the back seat and wound up out of the course and on her backside for a DNF on the day.
Julia Mancuso was very much in the hunt for a podium. With the second best downhill run of the morning, Mancuso made a significant mistake on the upper part of the slalom run, which evaporated her time advantage. But she was able to charge the lower part of the course to take fourth on the day.
Nicole Hosp managed to put two good runs together to take second, while her teammate, World Championships slalom silver medalist Michaela Kirchgasser, demonstrated the biggest improvement from one run to the next, skiing from 24th in the downhill to the third fastest combined time. Kirchgasser had by far the fastest slalom run of the day.
The morning’s downhill competition was delayed several times due to passing clouds and fog, and light was quite flat in the afternoon, but by most accounts the course workers did a great job preparing a slick and fast slope, despite snowfall overnight.
For the North Americans, Marie Michele Gagnon earned her best World Cup result of the season, fifth, with a strong slalom performance to close out the day.
It was a relatively straightforward slalom course, set by the Americans. Leanne Smith, far from a tech specialist, looked clumsy out of the slalom start in the afternoon to slip back to 26th. Meanwhile, fellow speed teamer Laurenne Ross, not expected to make much of an impact in the slalom after finishing 12th in the downhill, put together a relatively strong performance to finish 15th on the day.
by Hank McKee
Women’s World Cup Super Combined, Meribel, France, Feb. 24, 2013
1 Maze, Stoeckli/Lange/Atomic
2 Hosp, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer
3 Kirchgasser, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
4 Mancuso, Head/Head/Head
5 Gagnon, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
6 Curtoni, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
6 Hronek, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer
8 Gut, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
9 Sejersted, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
10 Stuhec, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
Women’s World Cup Super Combined, Meribel, France, Feb. 24, 2013. … It is the 55th race of the 2013 World Cup schedule. … The 34th for women and the second of two combineds. … It is the eighth Cup race hosted by Meribel and the first combined. … five races remain on the schedule.
It is the 19th career World Cup win for Tina Maze. … her third in combined. … It is her ninth victory of the season including one gold medal at World Championships, and her 21st podium of the season, including three at World Championships.
It is the 52nd career Cup podium placing for Nicole Hosp. … her seventh in combined. … It is her third podium result of the season, all in combined, including the bronze medal at Worlds.
It is the 13th career Cup podium result for Michaela Kirchgasser. … her third in combined. … It is her third podium result of the season, including a silver medal in slalom at World Championships. … All three of her podium results this season have come in different disciplines.
It is the 43rd time Julia Mancuso has placed among the top four of a World Cup event. … The fourth time in combined in her career. … It is her fourth top four of the season including the bronze medal in super G at World Champs. … Marie-Michele Gagnon matches her second best career World Cup result and records a personal best in combined. … It is her best finish of the season. … Laurenne Ross matches her ninth best career Cup score and records her personal best in combined. … It is her sixth best finish of the season. … It is the 11 score of the season for Leanne Smith.
Maze pads her World Cup overall standings lead to 1844-886 over Maria Hoefl-Riesch (DNF race). … with five races remaining she cannot be beaten for the World Cup overall title. … Lindsey Vonn (did not race) is third overall with 740pts. … Mikaela Shiffrin (did not race) is sixth overall with 638pts and Julia Mancuso (fourth in race) is seventh with 623pts. … Maze leads the combined standings 200-160 for Hosp. … Gagnon is fourth with 77pts, Mancuso sixth with 74pts. … Austria leads the women’s Nations Cup 3853-2918 over the US. … Germany is third with 2162 and Canada ninth with 639pts.
FIS World Cup
Ladies’ Super Combined
Feb. 24, 2013
|Rank||Name||Year||Nation||Run 1||Run 2||Total Time|
|9||SEJERSTED Lotte Smiseth||1991||NOR||1:17.65||44.67||2:02.32|
|23||AGERER Lisa Magdalena||1991||ITA||1:16.45||47.65||2:04.10|
|28||SIMARI BIRKNER Maria Belen||1982||ARG||1:21.37||49.22||2:10.59|
|Did not finish 2nd run|
|Did not finish 1st run|