Podium chances for British women

16th February 2010, by Chris Gill

Ingrid Jacquemod

Ingrid Jacquemod

The Olympic women’s downhill race, now rescheduled for Wednesday 17 Feb to accommodate the Whistler weather, holds obvious interest for British spectators with the participation of Chemmy Alcott. She may be only 41st in the World Cup downhill rankings, but she is an impressive 8th in the combined and undoubtedly has the potential to compete in the downhill. In her first training run in Whistler, she was a very encouraging 8th.

But that’s not all. Among the more obvious contenders for the podium is an Anglo-French woman who could be skiing for Britain: Ingrid Jacquemod, daughter of the press relations manager of Val d’Isère, Birmingham-born Jane Jacquemod.

A year ago, that possibility looked stronger than ever. Ingrid had an unhappy 2008/09 in the French team. In February, after coming 19th in the super-G and 20th in the downhill world championship race on her home turf of Val d’Isere, she withdrew from the championships and did not race in the giant slalom.

Happily, Ingrid successfully regrouped over the summer of 2009 and is back on form: this season she has had two World Cup podium finishes, including a perfectly timed 2nd place in the St Moritz downhill only a fortnight ago, and is currently 4th in the downhill rankings.

This is Ingrid’s third Olympics, and when we had a vin blanc with mum Jane a week back she was quietly confident that it’s going to be third time lucky. In her second training run in Whistler Ingrid posted 3rd.

Let’s hope both these British women make it to the podium. The race is scheduled for 7pm Wednesday, and will be shown live on BBC2.

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