The men and women of the United States’ World Junior Championship team took a stunning silver medal in the team event under the lights in Val di Fassa, Italy, on Friday night.
The American team of AJ Hurt, Katie Hensien, River Radamus, and Ben Ritchie bested the Czech Republic, Italy, and Sweden before falling to France in the finals 3-1.
“Personally, I’ve had two incredible days,” said Radamus, who enjoyed his second medal in as many days after his gold in Thursday’s super-G. “For our team it was a hard journey, also because Italy was a really tough opponent to face in the quarterfinals. We were all great and it’s a very special silver. In the final maybe I could have done something more, but in this kind of race it only takes a moment to get off track.”
“This event is really special because four athletes truly compete together, which doesn’t happen in any other event in our sport,” added Alpine Development Director Chip Knight. “The women’s and men’s staff works together on the hill, and all the athletes who aren’t racing were there cheering at the bottom. It was a true team effort.”
The French team was pleasantly surprised with their performance, especially since the French juniors had traditionally underperformed in the team event for such a powerhouse alpine nation, having yet to advance out of the early rounds in the last two World Junior team events in 2017 and 2018.
“We never thought we would win, also because in the last two editions of the Junior World Ski Championships we had always come out in the first round,” said France’s Doriane Escane. “Beating Norway in the quarter-finals was a surprise for us too and at that point we really started to believe in it. In the final it was a head-to-head tightened and when Augustin gave us the point of triumph for us it was an immense joy.”
In the small final for the bronze medal, Germany beat out Sweden.
- United States
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