Didier Cuche bests Ted Ligety at Soelden GS, rookie Tommy Ford impresses

Posted By: Zeke Piestrup on October 25, 2009 9:03 am

Soelden, Austria – With last year’s winner Daniel Albrecht still out after his horrific crash in Kitzbuehel, the rest of the podium just moved up one spot.  Switzerland’s Didier Cuche won the opening event (a giant slalom) of the men’s World Cup after finishing second last year.  And American Teg Ligety (pictured top) finished second, after finishing third last year.   It was Ligety’s third straight podium in Soelden.

“This is the toughest year I’ve raced in Soelden. It hasn’t been that many years, but today was super bumpy and pretty variable snow. I was psyched to make it down and get second, so it was definitely a good day,” Ligety said. “I’m super psyched with how I am skiing and it’s a good way to start out the season.”

For Ligety, it was a Swiss sandwich, with Cuche in first and Carlo Janka in third.  “Soelden is always a little different every year just because it’s the first race of the year and you don’t really know how fast you’re skiing. You have to psych yourself up all that much more because you have no idea if you’re fast or not, but luckily I was able to step up and have good races,” Ligety said. “I felt like I was skiing great. I still had some mistakes, but everyone has mistakes every run, so it’s not too big of a deal there.”

It was also a big day for World Cup rookie, Tommy Ford (right) of Bend, Oregon.  In his first ever World Cup race, Ford finished 32nd.  “Tommy Ford, I’ll tell you what, that was a hell of a performance. First World Cup and he came out and skied in the race just like he does in training,” Men’s Alpine Head Coach Sasha Rearick said. “He did get tossed around once in the chop and got off line on three gates, but he was smart on the delays and in the next seven gates I think he skied better than anyone else in the race. To be able to play forward like that at 20 years of age and in your first World Cup is a tremendous performance.”

The men are now off to Beaver Creek for the Audi Birds of Prey.

Soelden, Austria – Oct. 25, 2009
Men’s Giant Slalom

1. Didier Cuche, Switzerland, 2:21.45
2. Ted Ligety, Park City, UT, 2:22.05
3. Carlo Janka, Switzerland, 2:22.40
4. Massimilliano Blardone, Italy, 2:22.41
5. Benjamin Raich, Austria, 2:22.90
6. Kjetil Jansrud, Norway, 2:23.27
7. Jean-Baptiste Grange, France, 2:23.87
8. Davide Simoncelli, Italy, 2:24.03
9. Jean-Philippe Roy, Canada, 2:24.08
10. Cyprien Richard, France, 2:24.13
31. Tim Jitloff, Reno, NV, 1:13.34
32. Tommy Ford, Bend, OR, 1:13.40
37. Jake Zamansky, Aspen, CO, 1:14.08
54. Warner Nickerson, Gilford, NH, 1:16.06

Zeke Piestrup ( More Posts)

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