The Iceman did not cometh to the podium — Carlo Janka finished fourth.
Sure he was, but coaches see things spectators don’t.
“It was a good start,” Rearick said of his team. “I was stoked to see Tommy [Ford] come out and charge. He
was ninth in the top split. He executed far beyond what he did in training.” That is, right up until his ski kicked
out from underneath him and he failed to finish the first run.
Ford had been hampered over the off-season with “nagging injuries” that have required him to back down
his strength-building components. As such, the coach says, he’s not as strong as he needs to be. With another training block before the Cup schedule gets into full swing, he’s got time to get all those muscles firing
when they need to fire. “We know he can get there,” Rearick said.
“[Thomas] Beisemeyer, it was his second World Cup and he came out charging, like we’d been teaching
him all summer,” said Rearick. With a start number of 65 and those sharp edged holes scattered about the
course, Beisemeyer changed his tactics to ski straighter and avoid the holes. “He eventually got popped by
a rut at the very flat and ground to a halt at the bottom,” said the coach. From that point, trying to generate
speed is futile. He finished 42nd and failed to make the cut. But still, the coach said, “I was pleased with his
Not that Rearick is blind to the deficiencies of his kids. “[Will] Gregorak and [Tim] Jitloff did not execute what
they are capable of by any stretch of the imagination,” he said.
Rearick said Jitloff seemed to “get tight” for the race then said both of the skiers had made
big strides in their abilities in training camps. That progress, though, can never stop.
“Every day you must go out with the idea that you need to get better,” said Rearick. “You are
never ready. You always need to keep working hard.”
The third-best result for the men came from Nickerson, finishing 35th in the first run and missing the cut for a second run by 0.29 of a second. “I thought I skied well,” said Nickerson. While
the rest of the team headed home, he elected to stay at Soelden and train for another week.
Canadian Jean-Philippe Roy made the second-run cut in 30th and then moved up to finish
22nd on the day. That was an impressive showing considering the veteran had started 53rd
and is coming off a knee injury. He said his conditioning might have been lacking as he had
to battle through fatigue.
Can Ligety carry it through for another World Cup GS title? Ah, that pressure again. “When
you’re a favorite, it always comes with added pressure,” he said. “I have three GS titles now
and I’d obviously like
to get the fourth. That
would tie me for the
second most GS titles.
It would be really cool
to be up there with guys
like [Michael] VonGruenigen, who was one of
my childhood heroes.”
Alberto Tomba each
own four Cup GS titles.
The category leader is
the legendary Ingemar
Stenmark with seven
GS crowns. The last of
those came in 1984, a
few months before Ted
was born. France’s Alexis Pinturault needed tenths but got hundredths.
SkiRacing.com OC TOBER 31, 2011 | 28