Olympic sensation and three-time Audi FIS Alpine World Cup giant slalom champion Ted Ligety came from behind Tuesday to win the second Audi Birds of Prey GS in Beaver Creek. This is Ligety’s second win in three GS races and brings him to second overall in the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup standings. He is currently behind Aksel Lund Svindal who is (tentatively) holding on to first place.
“This hill is really unique in the sense that it never super steep so you can pretty much arc the entire thing, especially on the bottom pitch. It’s just the perfect steepness for laying out. I felt my hip on the ground several times and it’s so cool to have your hip on the snow and not have your hands on the snow, but still feel like you’re in perfect control. That’s why I love racing Birds of Prey.”
Ted Ligety after winning the second giant slalom in Beaver Creek for the 10th win of his career
Ligety explains, “It’s really hard to come from behind with that kind of pressure and win, especially in snow like this. I don’t think I could have done much more than I did on my second run. It was pushing the line harder than I have all season.”
Once again the US Men’s Team had a stellar showing with 4 athletes placing in the top 30. Tim Jitlof was 10th, Tommy Ford15th (a career best) and Bode Miller finished at 29th.
Tim Jitloff had this to say about his 10th place showing, “I felt really good and this was a good result for me. I wanted to be in the top 10 and I did that. It’s always a positive sign when you see the green light after crossing the finish line.”
Tommy Ford elaborated on the day’s event further, ”I pushed harder today and I’m skiing well. I’ve got to work on my physical strength a bit, but things are feeling really good. This was a good result for me and a good result for Tim, but Ted is really on a level of his own in GS. He’s proven to be the best in the world for the last two or three years and that’s not changing anytime soon.
Tim Jitloff and Tommy Ford after finishing 10th and 15th respectively in the second giant slalom at Beaver Creek
There have been 13 World Cup races to date this season, athletes on the U.S. Ski Team have a combined 10 podium finishes, including seven overall victories.
Stay tuned to Universal Sports tomorrow (Wednesday the 7th) where all eyes stay on Beaver Creek for the women’s team to take their first race runs on the famed Birds of Prey track for the World Cup Super G. The day’s competition will feature hometown hero Lindsey Vonn who will compete in the race after sweeping three World Cup races this past weekend in Lake Louise, Alberta.
Photography by Doug Haney/U.S. Ski Team