Cup giant slaloms this season — wasn’t going quietly. Early in round two, the 21-year-old
destroyed the split times with a blistering run that kept her on the three huge finish-area big
screens through the next 17 racers. She finished third for her first worlds medal.
“I put all my heart in the second run,” said Worley, who was part of the winning French squad
in the previous day’s team event. “I was so disappointed after the first run. I am so happy. This
is the biggest success of my career so far.”
The reigning Olympic GS champ, Viktoria Rebensburg, ended up leading the home team in
fifth. Lena Duerr landed in18th. Riesch had recovered from her flu to finish fourth in the first
run, but slipped to her left hip while attacking a tight turn and failed to recover.
The top American was Julia Mancuso in 16th. Sarah Schleper finished 21st. Megan McJames
was saddled by missing the top- 30 flip and finished 34th.
Women’s Slalom, Feb. 19
The surprises were over by the women’s final race — the slalom. Though they didn’t pay
out much, all bets were on World Cup discipline leader Marlies Schild to become the fourth
Austrian woman in five World Champs races to take gold. And she didn’t disappoint, finally
grabbing gold with her fifth world championships medal.
Proving her five World Cup wins this season are no fluke, Schild lead in both runs to come
down with a 0.34-second lead on teammate Kathrin Zettel in second.
“It’s an amazing feeling; I skied for so many years on the World Cup and made some really
good medals, but not the gold medal and everyone expected I could do it today and I hoped
that I could,” said Schild. “Today is my biggest dream come true and that’s a little bit crazy for
me at the moment. I wanted to have gold, so I said just go for it and if you don’t finish or something, that’s life.”
Zettel, who missed races in the first part of the season because of pain in her left hip and
knee lingering from breaking that leg in 2007, grabbed her second career World Championship
medal (she also won 2009 combined gold).
“At first I was just so happy, and the more people that came to congratulate me, the more I
remember everything that went before, all those bad moments when I thought I should quit,”
The third grin on the podium belonged to Swede Maria Pietilae-Holmner. At 24 years old,
Pietilae-Holmner earned her first two World Cup wins this season. She has been thrilled to
feel like she is reaching the potential promised in her youth when she became a junior world
champion in slalom at age 19 and grabbed a GS worlds silver medal a year later.
“I think I’m getting closer to being a consistent favorite, ” said Pietilae-Holmner. “My first medal
I think came very early. Now, I think I am good that I think I can take this medal.”
The radiant and well-spoken Pietilae-Holmner was asked if she had considered a post-racing
career as a diplomat. “Some people are telling me these things,” she beamed. “We’ll see. For
now skiing is the most fun thing I can do, so it’s a good job.”