France Takes Four Medals in Super Combined Race

19 Jan 2011

Combining speed and technique, French skiers were in full force on the slopes in Sestriere, Italy winning four medals today in the Super Combined race at the 2011 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Alpine Skiing World Championships.

Solene Jambique (FRA), who won the gold medal in the Women`s Standing event with a time of 2:21.94, said she was very happy with her result.

"The skiis in Super-G are very long and that makes it a bit more difficult, but I did really well in the Slalom part of Super Combined today which helped my time a lot", Jambique said.

Following Jambique were Germany`s Andrea Rothfuss and Canada`s Karolina Wisniewska.

France`s Vincent Gauthier-Manuel also took the gold in the Men`s Standing event, with a time of 2:05.31. The Frenchman beat German powerhouse Gerd Schoenfelder by 1.75s. Switzerland`s Thomas Pfyl took the bronze medal.

Cyril More and Yohann Taberlet brought home to France the silver and bronze medals respectively in th Men`s Sitting event. Japan`s Takeshi Suzuki took the gold with a time of 2:07.79.

Chris Williamson (CAN), who took the bronze medal with guide Robin Femy in the Men`s Visually Impaired race, said he was very hopeful from the beginning with his performance.

"I feel confident with my Slalom because the last Slalom we had at the World Cup I won, so I am walking into this race feeling good," Williamson said.

Gold and silver medals in the Men`s Visually Impaired event went to Spain`s Yon Santacan with guide Miguel Galindo and Slovakia`s Jakub Krako with guide Dusan Simo.

Finland`s Katja Saarinen came in fifth in the Women`s Standing, and even though she fell in the Super-G part of the event, she made it past the finish line.

"Skiing with one leg in the Super-G run is very hard, and I plan on doing a good Slalom run to make up for it - so yes, it is a hard and long day," Saarinen said.

A few athletes were still getting used to the course, as Russian guide Viacheslav Molodtsov pointed out followed his race with Valery Redkozubov in the Men`s Visually Impaired event.

"It is the first time that my athlete and I are on this slope and on this course, so it was a bit challenging for both of us," Molodstov said. "But we are still happy with the result."

Others saw the Super Combined race as the ultimate test of their skills and abilities, like France`s Jean Yves Le Meur (Sitting event), who was aiming to improve his speed on the course.

"I am normally good at technical races, so I hope to make up the time I lost in Super-G with my Slalom, but it is going to be difficult," Le Meur said.

Competition will continue tomorrow, 20 January with the Slalom race.

Watch interviews with athletes from Sestriere at the official YouTube channel for ParalympicSport.TV at

Taking place in Sestriere, Italy from 15-23 January 2011, over 130 athletes from 23 countries are competing at the venue which was used during the Torino 2006 Paralympic Winter Games. The World Championships are the biggest gathering of Paralympic Winter Sport since the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games.

The 2011 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in Sestriere include Downhill, Giant Slalom, Slalom, Super-G, Super Combined and Team events.