The final NorAm speed races of the 2019 season are underway this week in Sugarloaf, Maine, with the final men’s and women’s downhill races taking place on Tuesday, March 19. The second men’s and women’s race also doubled as the U.S. Alpine Championship downhill, awarding the prestigious national title to the winners. As Tuesday’s races were the final downhills of the season, final NorAm standings in the discipline were also solidified and 2020 World Cup starting spots were awarded to the top two continental finishers in the standings.

Men’s Downhills

Men’s racing got underway on Tuesday with a field comprised of 58 athletes from six nations taking on Sugarloaf’s famous Narrow Gauge race venue. Technical up top with gliding skills paramount on the bottom, Tuesday’s races were a true test of downhill ability.

In the first race, U.S. Ski Teamer Thomas Biesemeyer took the win with a time of 1:08.10 seconds, only 0.05 seconds ahead of his teammate Jared Goldberg in second. A third American, Ryan Cochran-Siegle, rounded out the podium in third place, 0.16 seconds off of Biesemeyer’s winning pace. Times were very tight in race one as the top-10 finishers were all within 0.53 seconds of one another. Top junior honors in race one went to Kyle Negomir who finished in fifth place overall, 0.18 seconds back.

Race two saw the same three racers on the podium but Cochran-Siegle improve on his morning’s performance to take the win and National Championship Title in 1:07.53 seconds. Second place went to Biesemeyer, 0.13 seconds back, and Goldberg finished in third, 0.18 seconds off the pace. Negomir was once again top junior, finishing just off the podium in fourth place, 0.31 seconds back.

“To win a U.S. National Downhill Title today means a lot to me,” Cochran-Siegle shared. “It’s sort of one of those things that you dream about as a kid and to be in a position now having accomplished it makes me appreciative and thankful. I realize that quite a few things had to come together in order for this to happen and I’m fortunate that all of the pieces fell in place the right way for me today. Hats off to Jared and Tommy for really stepping it up and making both of these races so competitive. At the end of the day, I couldn’t be happier to take the win.”

In the final NorAm downhill standings, Canada’s James Crawford ended the season with the downhill title with Negomir in second and Biesemeyer in third. Crawford and Negomir earned 2020 World Cup starting rights.

Race One Results

  1. Thomas Biesemeyer (USA): 1:08.10
  2. Jared Goldberg (USA): +0.05
  3. Ryan Cochran-Siegle (USA): +0.16
  4. Felix Monsen (SWE): +0.17
  5. Kyle Negomir (USA): +0.18
  6. Jeffrey Read (CAN): +0.20
  7. Sam Morse (USA): +0.23
  8. Alexander Koell (SWE): +0.45
  9. Kyle Alexander (CAN): +0.49
  10. Brodie Seger (CAN): +0.53

For complete FIS results, please click here.

Race Two Results

  1. Ryan Cochran-Siegle (USA): 1:07.53
  2. Thomas Biesemeyer (USA): +0.13
  3. Jared Goldberg (USA): +0.18
  4. Kyle Negomir (USA): +0.31
  5. Sam Morse (USA): +0.54
  6. Felix Monsen (SWE): +0.62
  7. Wiley Maple (USA): +0.72
  8. Jeffrey Read (CAN): +0.80
  9. Alexander Koell (SWE):+0.89
  10. James Crawford (CAN): +1.13

For complete FIS results, please click here.

Women’s Downhills

On the women’s side, racing was no less exciting as the fastest up-and-coming women’s speed skiers battled it out for FIS results, NorAm points, and national titles. With a field of only 30 racers, the women’s competitions were over quickly but were no less exciting as rimes were tight for the podium.

In race number one, the U.S. Ski Team’s Nina O’Brien took the victory with a time of 1:11.53 seconds. O’Brien’s win was her first in downhill at any international level. Second place went to fellow U.S. Ski Teamer and California native Keely Cashman who finished only 0.03 seconds shy of the win. World Cup regular Alice Merryweather, also of the U.S. Ski Team, rounded out the podium in third, 0.20 seconds back. Cashman was also the fastest junior.

Race number two saw Merryweather jump to the top of the standings and take the win and National Championship in 1:10.61 seconds. Cashman once again finished runner-up, 0.31 seconds back, and another U.S. Ski Team athlete, AJ Hurt, rounded out the podium in third, 0.57 seconds off the pace. Cashman was again the fastest junior.

“I’m really psyched to win the national downhill title,” Merryweather said. “Sugarloaf is where I skied my first downhill, at Eastern Region speed week probably seven years ago, so to come back and win this race here is really special. Plus the race crew did an amazing job with the surface, so all around it was a really fun event!”

In the race for the NorAm downhill title, Hurt emerged victorious ahead of Cashman in second and Team CLIF athlete Isabella Wright in third. Hurt and Cashman earned 2020 World Cup downhill spots.

Race One Results

  1. Nina O’Brien (USA): 1:11.53
  2. Keely Cashman (USA): +0.03
  3. Alice Merryweather (USA): +0.20
  4. AJ Hurt (USA): +0.46
  5. Patricia Mangan (USA): +0.91
  6. Isabella Wright (USA): +0.97
  7. Esther Paslier (FRA): +1.12
  8. Camille Cerutti (FRA): +1.37
  9. Sarah Rowe (USA): +1.42
  10. Madeleine Chirat (FRA): +1.52

For complete FIS results, please click here.

Race Two Results

  1. Alice Merryweather (USA): 1:10.61
  2. Keely Cashman (USA): +0.31
  3. AJ Hurt (USA): +0.57
  4. Nina O’Brien (USA): +0.76
  5. Esther Paslier (FRA): +1.14
  6. Madeleine Chirat (FRA): +1.21
  7. Isabella Wright (USA): +1.56
  8. Stefanie Fleckenstein (CAN): +1.79
  9. Camille Cerutti (FRA): +1.81
  10. Lauren Macuga (USA): +2.59

For complete FIS results, please click here.

The men and women now race super-G in Sugarloaf on Wednesday, March 20.

Article Tags: Alpine, NorAms, Premium NCAA / Continental Cup, Top Rotator

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Sean Higgins
Senior Editor
- A Lake Tahoe native and University of Vermont graduate, Higgins was a member of the Catamounts' 2012 NCAA title winning squad and earned first team All-American honors in 2013. Prior to coming to Ski Racing Media, he coached U14s for the Squaw Valley Ski Team.
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