Julia Mancuso skied to fourth place in Sunday’s super combined event in Meribel, France, narrowly missing the podium. Slovenia’s Tina Maze maintained the dominance she’s exhibited all season with a first place finish — her eighth of the season. Maze was joined on the podium with Austrians Nicole Hosp and Michaela Kirchgasser who finished second and third respectively.
On a day that began with a delayed downhill start and a decision to lower the start point of the slalom, Julia Mancuso had her work cut out for her. She ripped in the downhill portion of the event, taking second, but unfortunately, soft snow in the slalom portion stripped her of the momentum needed to land in the top three. Despite missing the opportunity to claim podium real estate, fourth is a huge bump up from Saturday’s downhill where she landed in 13th. Mancuso spoke after the race, and attributed her improvement to a reduction in errors.
“I didn’t make any mistakes in the downhill and that was my plan,” said Mancuso. “I made too many yesterday, but it’s pretty hard to put any time on the slalom skiers. It seemed like we ran about half of the full length of the downhill.”
“Julia did a really good job today,” said Head Coach Alex Hoedlmoser. “We know that we don’t have too much of a shot in the slalom and our goal was to put some more effort into the downhill and fix some things from yesterday. That definitely worked out. It was unfortunate that we had to go from the lower start today. If it would have been from the top, Jules might have had a bigger gap on the Austrian slalom specialists and been on the podium.”
Fellow teammates Laurenne Ross placed 15th and Leanne Smith finished in 26th.
As the World Cup tour continues, Team USA will find themselves in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany for a downhill and a super G.