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Copyright © 2001 Express Publishing Inc.
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For the week of December 5 - 11, 2001

  Opinion Column

Countdown to Olympics begins for speed skiers

Picabo 6th, 5th in 
World Cup DH openers

She didn’t win, which was a little frustrating for 30-year-old Picabo Street of Triumph and Park City. She made a couple of little mistakes that dropped her off the podium.

But Street was the leader who spearheaded a promising start for the U.S. Ski Team women’s speed skiers Thursday through Saturday at Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada.

Following up on an accurate course report by teammate Caroline Lalive, Street nailed the bottom and hung up her best World Cup result since 1998 with a sixth-place result in Thursday’s downhill debut.

On Friday, two-time World Cup DH queen Street overcame a mid-race mistake to finish fifth. Racing second, Street hooked her arm on a gate and lost probably a half-a-second.

Winning both DHs by .33 and .06 seconds was Italy’s Isolde Kostner, who has recorded four of her 11 World Cup DH victories at Lake Louise. Maine’s Kirsten Clark was right behind Street, in 11th and 8th.

Street said, "It’s been really fun having my team, and that’s something I’m really relying on a lot right now—the support of the team and the camaraderie we have and the support we give each other. We genuinely hope everybody does well."

When 22-year-old Caroline Lalive of Steamboat Springs podiumed in Saturday’s super giant slalom with a third, Street gave "Liner" a huge hug at the finish. Weary from three races in three days, Street settled for 38th.

The next downhill/SG combo is Dec. 21-22 at St. Moritz, Switz. Before that, the women run SG at Val d’Isere, Fra. Dec. 6 and Megeve, Fra. Dec. 15.


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