Laurenne Ross wins super G
SQUAW VALLEY, Calif. -- Laurenne Ross won super G on Friday in the U.S. Alpine Championships, beating Stacey Cook by 0.01 seconds for her first national title.
Defending champion Julia Mancuso was third, 0.08 seconds behind Ross.
"Everybody always goes out there with the goal of getting on the top of the podium, but usually it's Julia," said Ross, from Bend, Ore. "It's nice to beat her every once in a while because it doesn't happen very often and when it does, it's really exciting.
"This was the toughest U.S. Championships super G course I've ever ran. There are a couple really technical sections. It never lets up. You always have to be on your toes and look ahead."
Cook is from Mammoth Mountain.
"It wasn't a feel-good run at all, but it's the time that matters in the finish," Cook said. "It's not necessarily how you look on the way down, it's how fast you can get here."
Mancuso, from Squaw Valley, won the giant slalom Thursday.
"There's some difficult turns on top and it's still bumpy from the new snow we got, but it was still a lot of fun," Mancuso said. "I wanted to make it to the finish and win, but our World Cup team is super tough, so it isn't a surprise that Laurenne and Stacey were faster."
The race served as the first half of the combined event, pairing the fastest times from super G and slalom.
In the men's race, Squaw Valley star Travis Ganong won by 0.20 seconds on his home course. Ganong also won the event in 2010.
"It's really nice to actually be home and on home snow, sleep in my own bed, and have all my family and the hometown crowd out supporting," Ganong said. "I grew up training on this hill every day, so it's really nice to get on a familiar hill. The hometown crowd really motivates me to push it harder and really go for it.
"This is more of a World Cup than a nationals hill. It's pretty tricky, really steep out of the top with some blind turns. It's intimidating. The key sections for me were on the flats."
NorAm overall and U.S. downhill champion Jared Goldberg of Holladay, Utah, was second, and Mark Engel of Truckee finished third.
"The course is really good," Goldberg said. "This is a lot like what I'm used to. There's blind rollers everywhere. It's like everything that we've always trained and I was super excited to ski it. It's one of the more fun courses I've run."