World Cup Alpine racing: Travis Ganong leads U.S. men in super G | SierraSun.com

World Cup Alpine racing: Travis Ganong leads U.S. men in super G

Sylas Wright
Sierra Sun and U.S. Ski Team report

KVITFJELL, Norway and#8212; Travis Ganong out of Squaw Valley continued to build on his breakout season with a 28th-place finish Sunday in Norway to lead the U.S. men in a World Cup super G.

Canadian Erik Guay took the first World Cup super G win of his career, while Hannes Reichelt of Austria placed second, recording a time of 1:31.97 to Guayand#8217;s 1:31.95. Olympic champion Aksel Lund Svindal of Norway was third in 1:32.26.

The race marked a first for Ganong (1:33.72), who was fresh off winning the U.S. Alpine Championships downhill title in Aspen, Colo., the previous weekend. After competing in only four World Cups in his career and#8212; all this season and#8212; Ganong landed himself in the World Cup points for the first time with his top-30 finish.

That means heand#8217;s guaranteed a starting spot in next yearand#8217;s World Cup super Gs, said Ganong, who finished second in the NorAm Cup downhill standings to also secure World Cup starts in that discipline. He now heads to Vermont for the NorAm finals, then competes in the remaining events of the U.S. Alpine Championships from March 19-22.

Itand#8217;s been quite a year, considering Ganong entered the season as an invitee after being demoted from the U.S. Ski Teamand#8217;s C Team last spring. But Ganong credits that demotion for adding fuel to his desire to improve.

and#8220;I was told by the U.S. Ski Team that I was going to be on my own, so that kind of re-motivated me to really work harder and want it more,and#8221; he said Tuesday from Quebec, Canada. and#8220;Itand#8217;s a combination of that and switching to Atomic skis and just getting stronger.and#8221;

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Ganong said he thinks heand#8217;ll be ranked about 40th in the world in downhill, which should place him on the USAand#8217;s B Team.

and#8220;So Iand#8217;m set up pretty good coming off this season for next year,and#8221; he said.

Only three U.S. athletes competed in the Kvitfjell super G Sunday. Steven Nyman followed Ganong in 31st, followed by Scott Macartney, who was 41st. Bode Miller and Truckeeand#8217;s Marco Sullivan both skipped Kvitfjell to rest injuries.

Now, the U.S. men leave Norway for Germany where World Cup Finals will be held. The action starts on March 10 with menand#8217;s and womenand#8217;s downhill, which fans can watch live along with the rest of World Cup Finals on UniversalSports.com.

Ted Ligety and Jimmy Cochran will represent the menand#8217;s team during World Cup finals with Ligety skiing in all disciplines and Cochran in slalom. Sullivan will also make his way to Garmisch to compete, but is nursing injuries and will decide at race time if he can compete. Ligety presently leads in the Audi FIS World Cup giant slalom and will be seeking his second series title.

2010 AUDI FIS WORLD CUP

Kvitfjell, Norway – March 7, 2010

Men’s Super G

1. Erik Guay, Canada, 1:31.95

2. Hannes Reichelt, Austria, 1:31.97

3. Aksel Lund Svindal, Norway, 1:32.26

4. Tobias Gruenenfelder, Switzerland, 1:32.26

5. Mario Scheiber, Austria, 1:32.27

28. Travis Ganong, Squaw Valley, CA, 1:33.72

31. Steven Nyman, Sundance, UT, 1:33.90

41. Scott Macartney, Crystal Mountain, WA, 1:35.26

DNS: Marco Sullivan, Bode Miller