World Cup skiing | Cook, Mancuso among top 10 in Russia downhill | SierraSun.com

World Cup skiing | Cook, Mancuso among top 10 in Russia downhill

Sun Staff and U.S. Ski Team report

SOCHI, Russia and#8212; American women rewrote the record books Saturday as Lindsey Vonn finished third, Julia Mancuso of Squaw Valley was sixth, Truckee’s Stacey Cook was ninth and Alice McKennis 10th to place four American women in the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup downhill top 10 for the first time in history.

The record-setting team performance, which included all Americans finishing in the top 30, happened at Rosa Khutor Resort, which will be the alpine host of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games. The last time U.S. women place four in a World Cup top 10 was March 17, 1985 during a giant slalom in Waterville Valley, N.H.

and#8220;I definitely didn’t expect to be in the top 10 today, especially after the way I’ve been training this week,and#8221; said Cook, who grew up in Truckee and now skis out of Mammoth. and#8220;I’m not really sure what happened today. I’ve been fast in training runs this season and my downhill has been going really well, so I knew it was possible. It makes me really excited for the Olympics in two years. I kinda wish we could come back to Sochi next year. A couple of more runs down this hill wouldn’t hurt.and#8221;

Mancuso said she also looks forward to competing on the Olympic hill again.

and#8220;There’s still a few places that I can clean up, but we’ll still get three training runs for the Olympics, so I’ll have good chance to find out where I can make up some time,and#8221; she said. and#8220;I like to dream big, ski fast and dream about all of those powder days at Squaw Valley that helped me to get to this place that I am now. Being a professional skier and being able to ski in the Olympics is a pretty big honor, so I’m hoping to be back here in 2014.and#8221;

With a month still remaining in the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup, Vonn clinched a record fifth straight dowhill title with her third-place finish. Vonn now holds a 231-point lead over Germany’s Maria Hoefl-Riesch with just two events remaining (100 points per event). U.S. women lead Austria in the downhill rankings by 473 points.

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and#8220;I’m proud of this entire group,and#8221; said U.S. Women’s Head Coach Alex Hoedlmoser. and#8220;We had four girls in the top 10 on the Olympic hill and this shows that we’re on track for 2014. We have a pretty good chance on this hill and we’re going to do everything we can to medal here.and#8221;