Marie-Michèle Gagnon wraps up solid speed weekend with 9th in the women’s Super G at Lake Louise
Lake Louise, Alta. (December 5, 2021) — Canada’s Alpine Ski Team veteran, Marie-Michèle Gagnon (Lac-Etchemin, Quebec), concluded a consistent speed World Cup racing weekend, skiing into 9th place in the first women’s Super G race of the season this Sunday at Lake Louise.
The tech specialist turned speed Queen, matched her 9th place finish achieved yesterday in the downhill and added more valuable World Cup points to her 16th place result accomplished in the first downhill of the season on Friday.
“I’m happy that I put it out there today,” says Marie-Michèle who was 1.03 seconds off of Italy’s Sofia Goggia winning pace. “I really had more attack but unfortunately I still made too many mistakes for a podium performance,” adds the athlete who had a taste of stepping on a Super G podium last season with a career-first 3rd place finish at Garmish-Partenkirchen, Germany. “This weekend is a good base to build on for the rest of the season and it was especially fun to race in front of a home crowd and to hear everyone cheering!”
While Marie-Michèle was competing in her 248th World Cup career start and her 44th World Cup Super G race, she was joined at the top of the mountain by two fellow Canadians making their World Cup debuts: Katrina Van Soest (Vernon, British Columbia) and Sarah Bennett (Stoneham, Quebec).
Van Soest kicked out of the start hut wearing bib 50 and crossed the finish line in 42nd place, earning valuable World Cup mileage.
“Up top felt pretty normal since I had kicked out of the start gate a few times before,” explains Katrina who has foreran the Lake Louise World Cup over the past seasons. “On the course, I just didn’t trust my outside ski, especially coming into fallaway which led to a few mistakes, and I got low. But I skied around all the gates and that was pretty much the goal for today!”
Sarah Bennett slid on her inside ski on a choppy left turn and was unable to finish the course. “I’m disappointed because I knew I felt prepared to charge down the whole course.”
Van Soest and Bennett now hope to transfer their maiden World Cup experiences to the Nor-Am speed events held this week on the same track.
“Anytime that we gain on the track is super important, especially in speed,” explains Van Soest. “Feeling the different snow consistencies and getting some mileage before the Nor-Am block will be extremely valuable. I’m really looking forward to it,” she concludes.
The women’s World Cup speed team is now headed back to Europe for two Super G race held at St Moritz, Switzerland, on December 11 and 12. The women’s tech group will next compete in Courchevel, France for two back-to-back giant slalom events on December 21 and 22.
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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.