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MailTribune.com
  • Canada's Gagnon wins WC super-combined

  • ALTENMARKT-ZAUCHENSEE, Austria — Marie-Michele Gagnon ended a 30-year drought for Canadian women in World Cup combined events by earning her maiden victory on Sunday.
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  • ALTENMARKT-ZAUCHENSEE, Austria — Marie-Michele Gagnon ended a 30-year drought for Canadian women in World Cup combined events by earning her maiden victory on Sunday.
    Gagnon was 1.37 seconds off the lead in 16th after the super-G portion but went ahead of the field after posting the second fastest time in the slalom run.
    "It's really exciting, a magical moment," said Gagnon, who wasn't even born when Gerry Sorensen won a combined event in Puy St. Vincent, France, on Jan. 8, 1984 for the last triumph by a Canadian woman.
    "My teammate Erin Mielzynski won two years ago in Ofterschwang. She was the first Canadian woman to win in slalom in like 40 years," Gagnon said. "That was unbelievable and I didn't expect our team to make history again."
    Gagnon finished in an overall 2 minutes, 5.55 seconds to beat second-place Michaela Kirchgasser of Austria by 0.32. Olympic and world super-combined champion Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany trailed Gagnon by 0.39 in third.
    Nicole Hosp of Austria, who led the competition after the super-G, finished fourth.
    "It's amazing. I was quite surprised," said Gagnon, whose only previous podium came in a slalom in Are, Sweden, in 2012. "I didn't expect that after the first run. I knew I had to do a really good slalom run to be on the podium. I just tried to do my best and it looks like the pieces of the puzzle have come together."
    The super-combined format was introduced at the start of the 2005-06 season to replace the classic combined races, which consisted of one speed run followed by two slalom legs.
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