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Miller snags fifth in rough super-combi World Cup in Val d'Isere


Miller snags fifth in rough super-combi World Cup in Val d'Isere


December 11, 2009 —  VAL d'ISERE, France - Bode Miller (Franconia, NH) continued to keep the podium within arm's reach Friday as he latched on to a fifth-place finish in an Audi FIS World Cup super combined race.

It was nearly an all Austrian podium as Benjamin Raich won the race, followed in second by Marcel Hirscher, and Austrian Romed Baumann and Italian Manfred Moelgg in a tie for third.

Miller led through the splits throughout the second run, but lost speed to land in fifth after trouble with ruts, which were a problem in both the super G and slalom portions of the super combined, as well as challenging light conditions.

"The mistakes were there, but this was a difficult course. The light got worse and worse as it went along and that makes it really tough for me. If the light is good I can push a little harder," Miller said.

However, the day marked a goal accomplished for Miller who sought to regain World Cup points in the super combined discipline.

"It was important to get some points. I hadn't scored at all last year, so we needed to get our spots back and get in the top 30," Miller said. "I was happy to make it down. I pushed just hard enough and we got the job done with what we needed today."

Men's Alpine Head Coach Sasha Rearick said that while Miller did lose some time in the slalom run, his skiing was on point.

"It was a great job by Bode. He came out and skied solid in the super G and solid in the slalom. He got hung up a little in the slalom, but fought hard to stay in," Rearick said. "He skied a tactically smart race to score some points."

Miller continues aiming for the World Cup winner's circle and says that it will just take some time for his fitness to reach a point where he can execute at full capacity.

"The skiing is fine, but the fitness is still a problem. Today in the super G I was pretty tired in the bottom and not skiing very well. Then it was the same in the slalom - just a little bit fatigued," Miller said. "I can make the recoveries, but the execution isn’t as crisp and sharp as it should be. I think it will just take some time."

Olympic Champion Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) was also in the mix for a good World Cup finish, landing in 13th during the first run of super G and looking to make up ground during the slalom. But, as he was over a second ahead, he skipped across a rut, hooked his inside ski and ended up out on his back.

"Ted was going hard to try to get on the podium. He was skiing fast enough to be on any podium in any World Cup but he threw his feet out coming out of a pretty big flush and there was a big shelf there. It was the one place where he couldn't do that," Rearick said. "But, he's skiing fast and he's got to keep that intensity for the super G and GS coming up tomorrow."

Men's alpine continues its World Cup racing in Val d'Isere on Saturday with a super G.

Val d'Isere, France – Dec. 11, 2009
Super Combined

1. Benjamin Raich, Austria, 2:07.71
2. Marcel Hirscher, Austria, 2:08.60
3. Manfred Moelgg, Italy, 2:09.26
3. Romed Baumann, Austria, 2:09.26
5. Bode Miller, Franconia, NH, 2:09.40
DNF2: Ted Ligety, Park City, UT
DNF1: Andrew Weibrecht, Lake Placid, NY



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