Once again we get an inside scoop from Doug Haney with the US Ski team. Great insight to both the men and womens side of the World Cup circuit.
– It’s good to know that weather is casual conversation no matter where you are in the world. Yesterday, according to this story, click here, it brought “chaos” across Europe. Here’s the highlights, 450 flights grounded in Germany, Schiphol and Geneve airports closed completely, Christmas break started early for kids (Yeah!) and – and this is the best – in Europe they have snow tyres. I’ve always thought the “y” was under used.
Good news is Geneve, which is the closest major photo: Paul Bussi airport to Val d’Isere is back in operation and we are go for downhill racing. Bad news, the photographers are going to get a lot of pictures of taped faces and masks. It’s in the balmy single digits in Val D this morning and something tells me skiing in a snuggie is not fast.
Over in Italy, things are much more reasonable with sunshine and mid 20′s on tap for the Saslong Classic, here’s the notes:
Val d’Isere, France – women’s downhill
- Yesterday’s race would have been a bonus for Val d’Isere, but apparently Ma Nature doesn’t like super G. She does like powder days though and the girls had a good one yesterday, although most of the lifts only turned in time to get one or two runs. It takes a while to dig out from three feet. Needless to say, the course workers spent a lot of time slipping off snow yesterday and it’s looking good, but it will be soft. This race will be about touch. If you get outside the blue dye, might as well drop anchor.
- We’re racing in La Daille, the old school Oreiller-Killy piste that they’ve been running since 1966 – save the 2009 World Champs. Google Henri Oreiller and Jean Claude Killy, you’ll be one step ahead on Olympic Trivial Pursuit at your next holiday party. Man that game would be sweet. Hey USOC, let’s get Hasbro on the line…
- For the first time in a long time LV is not the DH points leader, but she’s right in the hunt had it not been for an insane save in Lake Louise, the gap definitely would have been bigger. While Hip Hop may have saved Lupe Fiasco’s life, reflex training saved Lindsey’s Lake Louise. DJ, cue cool story from Wired Mag now. She was third in this race a year ago at Val D – LV lets the beat drop with bib 20.
- Jules has been all up and around this world, she’s rocking a new California Van for the season (www.juliamancuso.com) and oh yeah, she’s been friggin’ fast. In eight World Cup starts this season, she’s been in the top 10 six times including a podium at the Lake Louise super G. I’m not a stock broker, but this gal is trending up my friends. She runs 21.
- Laurenne Ross has dreadlocks and a really cool blog. She’s also the 2010 NorAm overall champ and therefore has a start in any World Cup race she’d like to enter this season. She runs 34 and will be in the top 10 this weekend. I’ll be the Whoppers in my Christmas stocking on it.
- Cookie checks in each week with Universal Sports via Skype and you should check in too. She has a good laugh.
- Leanne, Chelsea, and McJ are on the board. Chels took a pretty mean digger in the final DH training, but is OK and will take a few stitches for a downhill ride today. They grow ‘em tough in Vermont.
We’re rocking live RIGHT NOW at www.UniversalSports.com. Sunshine and ccccccold. Where’s that guy with the Milka backpack full of hot cocoa?
Val Garden, Italy – men’s downhill
- Everything about this race is cool. Click this for a sweet back story on racing here. Oh and you can get pasta at the Italian house all night long.
- The Team stays at the same hotel every year. Babs runs the joint and really takes care of the guys. For all intensive purposes, she is our mom while we’re in Val G, complete with punishments. Seriously, she will whack the guys on the back of the head when they’re slow and give a sound scolding. She’ll then threaten to hold dinner if they’re not faster tomorrow. We promise Babs, today will be faster.
- Everyone in Gardena gets into it. Last season a band parked outside the hotel just to play a song for Bode before he went to inspection. It was cool. click here
- OK, now back to the Saslong, Mr. Nyman will give you a tour. He won here in ’07, I’d trust him to be a good guide.
- Bibbers: Marco 3, Bode 8, Horse 30, Travis 34, Steven 35, Fish 50.
Go time at 6:15 a.m. live on your lap top, so there’s still time to get in your picks at www.FantasySkiRacer.com. Go split screen with Universal Sports and see how you do. I’m adkayaker.