- 31 May 2018, 10:18 #17278
LAKE LOUISE, Alta. - Norways Kjetil Jansrud claimed the first mens World Cup downhill of the season and Canadas Manny Osborne-Paradis returned to the podium Saturday in Lake Louise, Alta.Jansruds victory was his first at the Alberta ski resort west of Calgary. Osborne-Paradis of North Vancouver, B.C., tied for second with Guillermo Fayed of France for the Canadians first World Cup medal since 2010.It feels really good, Osborne-Paradis said. I was nervous today because I knew I could be on the podium. This was the best chance Ive had in a long time.Jansrud conquered the 3,133-metre course in one minute 50.20 seconds. Osborne-Paradis of North Vancouver, B.C., and Fayed posted identical times of 1:50.34.Jansrud won gold in super-G and bronze in downhill at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, in February. His countryman Aksel Lund Svindal has dominated at Lake Louise with three straight super-G wins plus a downhill victory two years ago. But Svindal tore his Achilles tendon playing soccer last month and could be out for the season.Jansrud, 29, ensured the Norwegian anthem played again at Lake Louise.Lake Louise is not one of our toughest hills, but its real tough to ski fast, the Norwegian said. Its not really forgiving to ski on. If you stay on your edge for half-a-metre too long and then youre gone. It was tough skiing. Its not easy.Its like skiing on a wooden floor. Smooth, but that also makes it hard to be fast because you know its going to be the same for everybody. Its tough, but for me, it worked out nice.The men race a super-G on Sunday before heading to the World Cups next stop in Beaver Creek, Colo.I will not be celebrating because we have the super-G tomorrow, Osborne-Paradis said. Bummer.Saturdays race was held in clear, cold conditions with a temperature of minus-24.Jansrud and Osborne-Paradis were first and second respectively in Wednesdays training run. The next two training sessions were cancelled because 50 centimetres of snow fell on the mountain parks in 48 hours.I think it probably helped with having only one training run, Osborne-Paradis said. Guys were dealing with, probably dealing with, confidence issues. I cant totally speak for them.For myself, when I dont have a great training run, it is a different mental state you have to be in to push it (in the race) when you only have one.Fayed turned 29 on Friday and his belated birthday present was the first World Cup medal of his career.I was very surprised when I saw my time, the Frenchman said. I did a very good run, but you never know if you are fast or not.Because we had just one training, I was very good physically. Not tired.Lake Louise is the lone Canadian stop on the World Cup alpine ski circuit. Osborne-Paradiss silver medal Saturday was Canadas first there since he won super-G in 2009.Osborne-Paradis was also second in the Lake Louise downhill in 2006 for his first career World Cup medal. But he didnt race for almost two years after he broke his leg and tore a ligament on Jan. 29, 2011.One race, first race of the season, Im going to try and get on the podium at every race so it just helps, the 30-year-old said. So far were one-for-one.Osborne-Paradis lives in Invermere, B.C., which is 146 kilometres southwest of Lake Louise. He married Lana McIntosh on Sept. 20.From the prize purse of CDN$118,000 for Saturdays race, Jansrud earned $35,000 for the win. Osborne-Paradis and Fayed each picked up $23,000 as runners-up.Calgarys Jan Hudec, an Olympic bronze medallist in super-G, was 19th. Ben Thomsen of Invermere finished 29th, Dustin Cook of Whistler, B.C., placed 36th, Jeffrey Frisch of Mont-Tremblant, Que., was 44th and Morgan Pridy of Whistler came in 54th.Former world downhill champion Erik Guay of Mont-Tremblant did not race Saturday. Canadas most decorated World Cup ski racer with 22 medals has delayed the start of his racing season after a pair of off-season knee surgeries.Hudec was frustrated with his result because he felt strong and fast on his skis. He won the downhill at Lake Louise in 2007.Its not a survival course, but its a look-for-every-minute-detail kind of course, Hudec said.Thats what makes it different from other courses which you can overcome with survival skiing and just attacking it, whereas this, you have to be like cat . . . a sneaky cat. And nobody likes sneaky cats, but thats what youve got to be to be fast here. Josh Donaldson Jersey . Grimes signed a $32 million, four-year contract to remain with Miami. 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That was when she still was trying to compete against the men, when she didnt always look as if she was having fun and before injuries and criticism were a big part of her growing pains. On another tough day at Pinehurst No. 2, the 24-year-old from Hawaii held it together Friday with two key par putts and finished with back-to-back birdies for a 2-under 68, giving her a three-shot lead going into the weekend at the U.S. Womens Open. "I think you look at the way Michelle has played the last six months and you look at her differently," said Stacy Lewis, the No. 1 player in womens golf who was four shots out of the lead. "I think shes become one of the best ball-strikers on tour. She hits it really consistent. She knows where the balls going. And shes figuring out how to win. Thats the big thing." But theres a familiar name, and another teen prodigy, who joined Wie as the only players still under par. Lexi Thompson, who soundly beat Wie in the final round to win the Kraft Nabisco Championship for her first major title, powered her way out of the sand and weeds, running off three straight birdies to match Wies 68, the low score Friday. For all the interest in the men and women playing Pinehurst No. 2 in successive weeks, Wie and Thompson made the Womens Open more closely resemble the first LPGA major. Is it too early to start thinking rematch? "Definitely too early," Thompson said with a laugh. "Thirty-six holes in a major, thats a lot of golf to be played, especially at a U.S. Womens Open." For now, Wie had control. Her three-shot lead is the largest through 36 holes in the Womens Open in 11 years. She twice thought her shots were going off the turtleback greens, and twice she relied on her table-top putting stance to make long par saves. She finished with a 6-iron that set up a 12-foot birdie putt, and a 15-foot birdie on the par-5 ninth to reach 4-under 136. "End of the day yesterday, I was thinking if I just did this again, that would be nice," Wie said. "Finishing with two birdies is always great. Its a grind out there. Its not easy. Really grateful for the par putts that I made and some of the birdie putts that I made. I cant complain. Ill take it." Just when it looked as if this had the trappings of another runaway -- Martin Kaymer led by at least four shots over the final 48 holes to win the U.S. Open -- along came Thompson with a shot reminiscent of what Kaymerr did last week.dddddddddddd From the sand and bushes left of the fairway on the par-5 fifth hole, Thompson blasted a 5-iron from 195 yards just off the green, setting up two putts for birdie from about 60 feet. Kaymer was in roughly the same spot in the third round when he hit 7-iron from 202 yards to 5 feet, that pin position more toward the front. That was her third straight birdie, and she closed with four pars to reach 139. Sue Kim of Langley, B.C., and Brooke Henderson of Smiths Falls, Ont., each shot 73 to finish the second round in a tie for 14th place. Pinehurst No. 2 wasnt in much of a giving mood on another warm day in the North Carolina sandhills, with a brief shower in the middle of the afternoon that didnt do much to soften a dry, crusty golf course. Lewis, who opened with a bogey-free 67, picked up a bogey on her first hole in a wild round of six bogeys, three birdies and a tough 73. Even so, the two-time major champion managed to see the big picture. "I hung around, and thats what youve got to do at this tournament," said Lewis, at even-par with Amy Yang (69) and Minjee Lee, the 18-year-old amateur from Australia who played bogey-free on the back nine to salvage a 71. Lucy Li, the precocious 11-year-old and youngest qualifier in the history of the U.S. Womens Open, isnt leaving town until Monday. She just wont be playing any more golf. The sixth-grader from the Bay Area started with a double bogey for the second straight day and shot another 78 to miss the cut by seven shots. The cut was 9-over 149. Na Yeon Choi had a 70 and was at 1-over 141, followed by a Paula Creamer (72) at 2-over 142. The group at 143 included Karrie Webb (73) and So Yeon Ryu (74), who saved her hopes with three straight birdies on the front nine, and narrowly missing a fourth. All of them are former Womens Open champions. This is a different Wie they are chasing. She already has won this year in Hawaii, and she has eight top 10s and is No. 2 on the LPGA money list. Attribute that to a putting stroke that she owns, no matter how peculiar it looks with her back bent severely, almost parallel to the ground. And she has learned to play the shot -- she has a full allotment -- instead of worrying about her score or her position on the leaderboard. "I knew I could get better," Wie said. "I knew I could improve. But thats the game of golf. 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