Garmisch-Partenkirchen, GER (January 29, 2022) — Canada’s Marie-Michèle Gagnon (Lac Etchemin, QC), demonstrated she belongs in the top seed in downhill, finishing 9th on Garmisch-Partenkirchen’s famed Kandahar course.
Kicking out of the start hut wearing bib 1, Gagnon took advantage of a clean track to ski a smooth and solid run from top to bottom. Maintaining her speed throughout the course, she achieved her best split at the second to last interval with the 6th fastest time of the day, good for 9th place overall and best North American result.
“I used to get stressed about having bib number one, especially in Super G, but now I’m more comfortable with these kinds of these kinds of situations in downhill where we have a few training runs,” tells Mitch.
“What I’m most satisfied about today is the good feeling I had on my skis,” she adds. “After Cortina and the first training run here, the coaches and I decided to look at my boots. With the technician, we made significant changes to my fitting and came up with much more aggressive angles. My feeling on my skis is already much better and I feel like I can attack,” explains the skier who is hoping to keep the momentum from her three top 9 results in the discipline this season including a career best 5th place achieved two weekends ago at Zauchensee, AUT.
Mitch, who spent most of her career as a technical skier, has competed in two Olympics in 2010 and 2014. Her career best Games result is a 9th place achieved in slalom at Sochi. She has never competed in an Olympic downhill.
“I’m in the top 20 since the middle of last season in downhill so I feel like I belong in that group and I’m looking forward to giving it my all at Beijing,” adds the Mitch who officially sits in 14th place in the World Cup downhill standings following today’s result.
Swiss skier Corinne Suter skied a flawless run, taking the top spot by an impressive lead of 0.51 ahead of teammate Jasmine Flury. Austria’s Cornelia Huetter finished third, 0.78 off the winning pace.
Roni Remme (Collingwood, ON) was the only other Canadian entered into the race. She missed a gate halfway through the course and skied down uninjured.
The women will ski down the Kandahar one last time this season on Sunday for the Super G. Last season, Mitch shined in that event at Garmisch, skiing into 3rd place and earning her sole podium result in the discipline to date.
“I’m very excited for tomorrow’s race,” shares Mitch. “I have a great feeling on my skis now and that gives me the confidence to ski at my best,” she concludes.
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Alpine Canada is the governing body for alpine, para-alpine, and ski cross racing in Canada, as well as for Canadian ski coaches, providing education, certification, insurance, and compliance with the coaching code of conduct. With the support of valued corporate partners and donors, along with the Government of Canada, Own the Podium, the Canadian Olympic Committee, and the Coaching Association of Canada, Alpine Canada develops Olympic, Paralympic, World Championship, and World Cup athletes to stimulate visibility, inspiration, and growth in the ski community. In 2020/21, Alpine Canada celebrated 100 years of rich tradition in competitive skiing in Canada.