Both Miller and Goergl take third in Munich City Event
Ski racing is always looking for new events to promote itself and the current thought coming from FIS is that “if the people will not go to the mountains, then bring the mountains to the people.” While two world cup winners took the main wins (Ivica Kostelic and Maria Pietilae Holmner), HEAD racers Bode Miller and Lizz Goergl took the small finals to finish in third place in the male and female races. For Miller this was his best result of the year so far. With the top 15 racers in the Overall taking part, plus a wild card from the Germany, both racers added well earned 60 points to their tally for the season.
Miller had one of the hardest draws to the competition: in the first round he faced Michael Walchhofer – no slouch in the technical disciplines; then he came up against his old adversary Benni Raich. In both races this was vintage Miller: Fast, dynamic and powerful. "I hit the start every time, but not making mistakes is the most important," said Miller, who was also third in the 2009 exhibition parallel slalom in Moscow. "With a short course, you've also got to be fast out of the start. Then it helps to have good tempo have to be really balanced - it’s mostly timing."
The power of Miller was immense and such was his timing out of the start gate, despite straddling on the first run and having a full second to make up against Raich, he made this up on one gate. In the semi final he came up against the conqueror of Ted Ligety, Julien Lizeroux. Despite winning the first leg he had to settle for the small final against Felix Neureuther. "I could hear all 25,000 people because they were so close," Miller told reporters after the race. "But then again, 25,000 people hated the one who beat Felix. It was cool to hear them cheer for him."
Lizz Goergl looked imperious as she made her way through to the final unbeaten against Kamer and Fenninger. A defeat to eventual winner Pietilae Holmner saw her then take on Italian Merighetti in the small final and it was back to winning ways as she powered past the Italian. Goergl commented afterwards: "An absolutely cool event, which was really fun, I'm thrilled."
Other HEAD racers to take part in this exciting event that was watched by over 25,000 people were Lindsey Vonn and Susanne Riesch (both lost in the Quarter Finals), Maria Riesch (first round loser) and in the men Didier Cuche, Ted Ligety and Werner Heel (first round losers) and also Aksel Lund Svindal who lost in the quarter finals to Lizeroux.