Alpine

Ross Fifth in La Thuile Downhill

by
USSA
2016-02-19 06:48
 

LA THUILE, Italy (Feb. 19, 2016) – Laurenne Ross (Bend, OR) threw down a clean and strong run to take fifth place and lead the Americans in the La Thuile downhill. Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) lost a ski and did not finish the race.

“It feels good to be in the top five again,” Ross said. “I am feeling more comfortable now than I have all year, and that confidence is building with time and results.”

It was the first time the Audi FIS Ski World Cup tour visited the challenging and steep La Thuile track. The snow was grippy and dry, allowing the ladies to pick up speed and crank sweeping turns. Even with a big mistake, Lara Gut of Switzerland dominated the field, winning by more than a second over Austrian Cornelia Huetter. Nadia Fanchini of Italy grabbed a podium spot in front of the home crowd, finishing in third.

Vonn

Lindsey Vonn crashes out downhill Friday in La Thuile, Italy. (Getty Images/Agence Zoom-Alain Grosclaude)

Vonn was looking for her 77th World Cup win, but it was not her day, as her outside ski rattled off at the top of the course. Vonn’s DNF coupled with Gut’s victory slotted Gut back into the top position for the overall World Cup title.

“I was getting a little bit bounced by the ice there and I was a little bit inside with my body position and my ski just came off,” Vonn said. “I’m definitely disappointed. I thought I was skiing really well. That’s pretty much the one thing, besides the weather, that you can’t control. I did my job, and hopefully tomorrow my skis will do their job. I’m definitely going to be fired up for tomorrow.”

Laurenne Ross lands in fifth place.

After finishing fifth in Garmisch at the beginning of February, Ross showed that she can consistently break into the top 10. She found speed all the way down the La Thuile course, displaying her strength and finesse to take fifth.

Behind Ross, all the finishing American women grabbed World Cup points. Alice McKennis (New Castle, CO) was 16th, Stacey Cook (Mammoth Mountain, CA) 19th and Jackie Wiles (Aurora, OR) 20th.

Next up, the ladies race downhill again on Saturday, followed by super G on Sunday.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Laurenne Ross led the Americans in fifth place. Her finish ties her best downhill result in the 2015-16 season.
  • Lindsey Vonn crashed in the downhill and DNFed. Lara Gut took over the overall World Cup lead by 13 points.
  • Vonn still leads the World Cup downhill title chase.
  • The downhill was a make up race from the canceled Crans-Montana downhill last week.
  • Watch Universal HD’s replay of the downhill at 11:00 p.m. ET.
  • The women race downhill again in La Thuile on Saturday with super G Sunday.

Lindsey Vonn crashes in the downhill.

QUOTES

Laurenne Ross
It feels good to be in the top five again. I am feeling more comfortable now than I have all year, and that confidence is building with time and results.

There are some sections of the course that I can clean up, so I know there is more speed to be had. It was a bit rougher today, with more bumps and ice patches through the difficult portions, but its only going to get rougher tomorrow … might be a wild ride!

I really enjoy this course and am looking forward to another run on it tomorrow. Also, my dad is here to cheer me on, so that definitely makes me faster!

Lindsey Vonn
I was getting a little bit bounced by the ice there and I was a little bit inside with my body position and my ski just came off.

I’m definitely disappointed. I thought I was skiing really well. That’s pretty much the one thing, besides the weather, that you can’t control. I did my job, and hopefully tomorrow my skis will do their job. I’m definitely going to be fired up for tomorrow.

Broadcast and Live Streaming (times EST)
Friday, Feb. 19
11:00 p.m. - Women's downhill, La Thuile - Universal HD

Saturday, Feb. 20
6:00 a.m. - Women's downhill, La Thuile - LIVE - NBC Sports Live Extra

Sunday, Feb. 21
5:00 a.m. - Women's super G, La Thuile - LIVE - NBC Sports Live Extra
6:00 p.m. - Women's super G, La Thuile - Universal HD

RESULTS
Women’s downhill