Julia Mancuso was 13th to lead the U.S. Ski Team in Meribel as less than a second separated the top 17 downhill finishers (Getty Images/Agence Zoom - Vianney Thibaut)
MERIBEL, France (Feb. 23) - Less than a second separated the top 17 finishers in Saturday's Audi FIS Alpine World Cup women's downhill with Julia Mancuso (Squaw Valley, CA) leading the way for the U.S. Ski Team with 13th, .90 behind surprise winner Carolina Ruiz Castillo of Spain. It was a historic first World Cup downhill victory for Spain and the first podium of any kind since 2006. Alice McKennis (Glenwood Springs, CO) finished just behind Mancuso in a three-way tie for 14th.
World Champs super G bronze medalist Julia Mancuso (Squaw Valley, CA) led the U.S. Ski Team with 13th in a tight Audi FIS Alpine World Cup downhill in Meribel.
Less than a second separated the top 17 racers as Carolina Ruiz Castillo claimed a historic first downhill win for Spain.
Cook dropped one spot in the World Cup downhill standings to third behind sidelined Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) and Tina Maze of Slovenia.
McKennis is fifth, Smith ninth and Mancuso 14th in the standings as the U.S. Ski Team continues to lead the nation's standings for downhill.
Mancuso, Cook, Smith and Ross will start a super combined Sunday to close the weekend in Meribel
Universal Sports Network will broadcast the race at 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. ET.
QUOTES Alex Hoedlmoser, Head Coach This was a race where you had to be super precise. There wasn't any room for error if you wanted to be on the podium. Jules and Alice skied pretty well through my section and Stacey was really fast, but made a huge mistake and lost all of her speed. This was a tough course to lose speed and almost impossible to get it back.
We'll have to look at video and see what was going on and see how we can fix it for tomorrow's super combined. It was a beating for us and we're not used to that. Everyone is disappointed.