Vail’s Vonn DQ’d in super-combi at worlds
AP Sports Writer
VAL D’ISERE, France ” Austria’s Kathrin Zettel has won the super-combi at the world championships, while Vail, Colorado’s Lindsey Vonn was disqualified for splitting a gate in the slalom run.
Zettel won in a combined time of 2 minutes, 20.13 seconds Friday. Swiss teenager Lara Gut finished second, 0.56 seconds behind, and Elisabeth Goergl of Austria was third. The top U.S. finisher was Stacey Cook in 16th place.
Vonn posed for pictures as if she had won the silver medal before her husband gave her the bad news.
“I’ve been feeling so great this week,” said Vonn, who won the worlds super-G on Tuesday. “To come down hard like that today is hard to take.”
Vonn led after the downhill leg and was second fastest in the slalom, but replays showed she barely split a gate in a wild run. The American held a 1.48-second lead over Zettel going into the slalom, but made two big errors on the upper section of the twisting and technical Rhone-Alpes course.
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“Sometimes when you miss a gate with a hairpin, you can make the outside gate and I thought I made it,” Vonn said.
Vonn’s coaching staff went into the race jury room to check the tape and decided not to appeal after confirming she did split it.
“I was really confused for a while and really frustrated,” she said.
Vonn and was aiming for her fourth consecutive victory in a week, having posted World Cup wins last weekend in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. She is still the favorite for Sunday’s downhill race.
“I’m going to work hard and do everything I can to be on the podium in that race,” Vonn said.
Zettel was fifth after the downhill leg and third-fastest in slalom.
“I’m really surprised at this gold medal because Lindsey was quite in front of us after the downhill and she’s a good slalom skier,” Zettel said. “When she has a normal run she can (win) the gold medal.”
Zettel finished fourth in the super-combi at the 2006 Turin Olympics and was fifth at the 2007 worlds in Are, Sweden. She has won five World Cup races, all in giant slalom.
Defending champion Anja Paerson of Sweden missed a gate in the downhill leg, losing control for an instant after posting the fastest first split time. Paerson also failed to finish the super-G that opened the championships Tuesday, won by Vonn.
“I think these World Championships are all about bad luck for me,” Paerson said.
Maria Riesch of Germany finished fourth after struggling in slalom. She had won four straight slalom races earlier this season, but bruised her knee and back in a downhill training crash on Wednesday.
“I could have won a medal if I could have just skied down as normal,” Riesch said. “I really had to overcome that. This morning I still felt a little bit stiff.”
Julia Mancuso of the United States veered off course out of frustration in the downhill run. She has decided to sit out Sunday’s downhill.
The 17-year-old Gut nearly matched Vonn in the downhill portion, finishing 0.14 behind, and attacked in the slalom leg.
Gut finished fifth in her only World Cup super-combi on home snow in St. Moritz in December. She has never entered a World Cup slalom and this is her first major championship.
It was the first medal at a worlds or Olympics for Goergl, who has won two World Cup giant slaloms. She is the daughter of 1960 and 1964 Olympic downhill bronze medalist Traudl Hecher.