Weibrecht cracks top 10 in super-G
Vail, CO Colorado
BEAVER CREEK – American Andrew Weibrecht surprised himself Saturday with a 10th-place finish at the Birds of Prey super-G – he thought it would have taken him longer to crack the top 10 because of his most recent shoulder injury last season.
Weibrecht was a bright spot for the Americans Saturday as he was the only U.S. Ski Team member to crack even the top 20.
He attacked from the top to the bottom, he said, and it worked.
“I’m starting to get my feet back under me and I took a lot of confidence out of the downhill (Friday),” Weibrecht said. “It wasn’t the result I wanted (in Friday’s downhill), but I skied really well and I was happy with that. I knew that the skiing was there and I just needed to put a hard run down and really try to execute it.”
Weibrecht started 34th Saturday, after many skiers, including teammate Ted Ligety, made mistakes at the top of the course and didn’t finish. Teammates Travis Ganong and Thomas Biesemeyer also did not finish later in the race.
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Weibrecht said the snow was really good, but it was more aggressive than usual.
“It felt good to me,” Weibrecht said. “I just attacked from the top to the bottom. I really didn’t leave anything out there, and you know, maybe if I went up and skied it again I could be a little bit better, but you know I think that’s about as good of a run as I was going to have up there.”
Weibrecht said he was “thrilled” with his finish. His first race back after injury was just last weekend in Lake Louise, Alberta. He finished 51st in the downhill there and 30th in super-G. And after a 32nd-place finish in Friday’s Birds of Prey downhill, Weibrecht was thinking his comeback was going to continue to start out slow.
“Now to have a top 10 – it happened much quicker than I was expecting,” he said.
Friday’s Birds of Prey downhill winner Bode Miller struggled in super-G Saturday, something Miller admits has happened a lot at Beaver Creek. He made some mistakes up high and nearly missed a gate after making a huge recovery, but the mistake cost him a lot of speed. He ended up finishing 21st Saturday.
Miller said after Friday’s win that super G would be an important race for him, and while he finished, he was obviously disappointed with the run. He said after Saturday’s race that it’s tough to figure out a way to win on the Birds of Prey course.
Ligety was also obviously disappointed with his run Saturday. He skied off course up top in Pete’s Arena, missing a gate very early on in the run. He had hoped for a top 10 finish Saturday, he said.
He remains focused for Sunday’s race, though.
“(Giant slalom) feels good – this doesn’t matter for tomorrow,” Ligety said.
Nineteen-year-old skier Ryan Cochran-Siegle finished 29th for the U.S. Ski Team in just his third World Cup appearance ever. His first World Cup appearance was last weekend in Lake Louise, where he fell during the downhill and did not finish, and then placed 31st in super G. He was excited about Saturday’s finish at Beaver Creek.
“I was just listening to the course report as close as possible,” Cochran-Siegle said of his successful run.
Marco Sullivan finished 43rd Saturday and didn’t feel he made any big mistakes. He said the course held up well and was smooth, but he just wasn’t making clean, fast turns.
“I was kind of getting a little bounced on every turn, just chipping away, losing speed the whole way down,” Sullivan said.
Ski Club Vail’s Will Gregorak finished 36th, making it down the course with a fairly clean run.
“I had some sections where I skied really well,” Gregorak said. “I got pretty late on a delay before Screech Owl, which was kind of an important speed-carrying section, and it pretty much cost me top 30.”
Americans Tommy Ford and Tim Jitloff finished 27th and 45th, respectively.
Community Editor Lauren Glendenning can be reached at 970-748-2983 or firstname.lastname@example.org.