Gut manages podium finish minus ski pole

AFP/The Local
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Gut manages podium finish minus ski pole

Swiss skier Lara Gut battled to a third-place finish after losing a pole in the World Cup women’s giant slalom race at Lenzerheide in the canton of Graubünden on Sunday.


Gut finished less than two seconds behind winner Tina Maze, of Slovenia , and just over a second behind Tessa Worley, of France in the final competition of the season.
The result marked the third podium finish for  the 21-year-old Swiss this season and the ninth since debuting on the World Cup circuit at the age of 16 in December 2007.

“I did not panick,” Gut commented afterward, describing what went through her mind when she lost a pole wile hitting a gate in the second run..

“My father (her coach) taught me to face this kind of situation.”

But the race belonged to 29-year-old World Cup champion Maze who brought her remarkable season to a suitable end with a record 24th podium finish.

Maze’s stellar season saw her capture the giant slalom, the super-G and slalom crystal globes, in addition to the overall championship.

She stormed down the second leg of the Swiss race to turn a 42-hundreths of a second deficit to the French woman into a 32-hundreth winning margin.
"I have even impressed myself. It has been an incredible season," said Maze, who also won three medals at the world championships.

Such has been the dominance of the Slovenian that aside from her 11 race wins she became only the second skier ever, both man or woman, to break the
2,000 points barrier.

She accrued a total of 2414, itself a record, with former Austrian great Herman Maier the only other skier to have passed the landmark, back in the 2000 season.

"If someone had said to me before the start of the season I would achieve all this, I would have said they were mad," said Maze.
"I don't think that this is the fruit of just one year of hard work,” she said.

"One obviously requires talent and the need to work hard, but also to have a good team round oneself.”

For Gut, the podium finish left her in ninth position overall for the 2012-13 season, the best performance for the Swiss team in what has been overall a disappointing year.


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