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Austrians Win Gold In Team Parallel GS At Worlds

Parallel GS Schladming

The spell finally broke for the Austrian homeboys and girls at the FIS Ski Alpine World Championships in Schladming, Austria Tuesday night in the team parallel giant slalom. The Austrians won their first gold medal. The U.S. team finished sixth. 

 

The Austrians enjoyed a clear start-to-finish victory by defeating Slovenia and Germany before winning gold by beating Sweden. Reports from the sidelines said “incredible cheers” could be heard during the lap of honor.

 

The Germans took the bronze, just edging out the Canadian team. Fifteen nations battled for the popular event win on the Planai course.

 

"It wasn't easy, the whole country was watching the Austrian team," star racer Marcel Hirscher said. "We tried to give 100 per cent and I think all of us did a pretty good job. Everyone's celebrating and that's perfect."

 

The U.S. team was paced by Stacey Cook, Lauren Ross, David Chodounsky and Tim Jitloff. The powerhouse slalom skiing Swedes edged the U.S. in the quarter final. Chodounsky, who was strong in the Moscow City Event before the World Championships, led the U.S. squad by winning all of his duels.

 

“Moscow was my first time in an event like this. I've raced like this before just for fun, racing ski club when I was little back home. I skied the best I could. We got to the quarterfinals, but couldn't quite pull it off against Sweden. They're really strong,” Chodounsky said.

 

Ross said she had never done a team event before “so it was really exciting and actually a little bit nerve wracking with all of these people. I'm not sure how many fans are here. It feels like a billion. The energy is really awesome in these team events. I had a really good time. I hope I can keep participating in them.”

 

Next up is a well-earned day off, with the Women’s Giant Slalom scheduled Thursday and the men Friday. The Men’s GS has already sold out its 30,000 tickets and the FIS is pleading with fans to arrive early for the 10 a.m. local time start. 

 

The USA’s Ted Ligety has been skiing solid GS and will be a favorite for his third gold medal of the Worlds, having already bagged the super-G and super-combined titles.

 

Photo: Stadium at World Championships for night race (Getty Images/Agence Zoom/Alain Grosclaude)  

 

 

 

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