She’s human. It took five GS races this season, but the field was finally able to snag one away from current World Cup Overall leader Tina Maze under the lights in Are, Sweden Wednesday.
To get the job done, it took an Olympic GS champion in Viktoria Rebensburg, who skied a smoking-fast first run and nearly went out in the second. It was the first of two major second-run mistakes, but the German had enough time in reserve to complete her first victory of the season — just more than sixth-tenths faster than Austria’s Anna Fenninger (second) and nine-tenths faster the Maze (third).
After such dominance by Maze in the discipline this season, perhaps the length of the Are course, roughly 15 seconds longer than most others, was a factor. With a lot of variety and terrain features, the hill meanders in and around trees with both flat and steep sections — unlike the race earlier in the week, Courchevel, which is more of a wall.
Like Rebenburg, it was also the best result of the season for Fenninger, who put together two clean runs, but gradually lost time on Tessa Worley’s fastest second-run pace. Fenninger’s buffer proved to be enough, as she locked down a podium position coming through the finish, ultimately knocking Worley to fourth.
For Maze, the long course may have taken its toll, as she skied the second run aggressive, perhaps too aggressive up top, then appeared sluggish in her movements toward the bottom. Nevertheless, 60 more points toward the overall is nothing to sneeze at, especially with a 351-point gap over Germany’s Maria Hoefl-Riesch in the rankings.
For Julia Mancuso, who made some mistakes earlier in the evening, it was a noticeable improvement from one run to the next. After finishing 20th in the first lap, Mancuso went into full attack mode, executed better and skied the seventh-fastest second run. She improved to 14th on the day, even able to spend a bit of time in the leader’s box.
After finishing the first run 17th, Mikaela Shiffrin was no doubt disappointed with an early DNF in her second. The 17-year-old found herself a little late on the steep upper part of the course; she got caught on the inside ski, and that was the end of her day.
This story will be updated.
by Hank McKee
Women’s World Cup Giant Slalom, Are, Sweden, Dec. 19, 2012
1 Rebensburg, Nordica/Nordica/Marker
2 Fenninger, Head/Head/Head
3 Maze, Stoeckli/Lange/Atomic
4 Worley, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
5 Hansdotter, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
6 Hoefl-Riesch, Head/Lange/Head
7 Brem, Voelkl/Fischer/Marker
8 Lindell-Vikarby, Rossignol/Rossignol/Rossignol
9 Poutianinen, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer
10 Zettel, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
Women’s World Giant Slalom, Are, Sweden, Dec. 19, 2012. … It is the 26th race of the 73 race 2012-13 World Cup season. … It is the 15th race of the 43rd race women’s schedule, the 14th to be held. … It is the fifth of nine scheduled women’s giant slaloms. … It is the 84th Cup race to be hosted by Are (plus half of a combined). … the 27th GS. … Just the third race at Are to be held in December.
It is the ninth career win for Viktoria Rebensburg and eighth in GS. … It is her first with and third podium of the season. … It is her first win and second podium at Are. … She is second all time among German racers for GS wins behind Martina Ertl’s 10.
It is the 11th career World Cup podium for Anna Fenninger. … her third in GS. … She tops by one placing her previous best at Are, scored last March 9. … It is her second podium of the season after a third in super G at Lake Louise Dec. 2.
It is the 46th career World Cup podium for Tina Maze. … and her eighth of the season. … She had won all previous GS races this season. … She has also registered podiums in combined (St Moritz), in super G (St Moritz) and in slalom (Aspen). … It is her fifth career podium scored at Are and her third best result at Are.
It is the ninth best career result at Are for Julia Mancuso. … her fourth best at Are in GS. … She has scored in ten of the 14 women’s races held so far this season. … It is the ninth career World Cup GS point performance for Marie-Pier Prefontaine. … Her third of the season.
Maze leads the World Cup overall standings 859-508 over Marie Hoefl-Riesch (sixth in race). … Zettel is third with 466pts. … Lindsey Vonn (did not race) is fourth with 414pts and Mancuso seventh with 345pts. … Marie-Michele Gagnon (DNF 1st) is the top Canadian in 14th with 164pts. … Maze leads the GS standings 460-306 for Zettel. … Rebensburg is third with 204pts. … Mancuso leads the US in 16th with 84pts. … Gagnon the Canadians in 20th with 70pts. … Austria leads the women’s Nations Cup 1925-1378 over the US. … Germany is third with 1207. … Canada is ninth with 239.
FIS World Cup
Ladies’ Giant Slalom
Dec. 19, 2012
||Name||Year||Nation||Run 1||Run 2||Total Time|
|15||SEJERSTED Lotte Smiseth||1991||NOR||1:16.52||1:15.54||2:32.06|
|Did not qualify for 2nd run|
|RUIZ CASTILLO Carolina||1981||SPA|
|AGERER Lisa Magdalena||1991||ITA|
|Did not finish 2nd run|
|Did not finish 1st run|
|LEMGART Charlotte Techen||1993||DAN|