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Aspen’s Brownell-Patty makes it 2 for 2

Chris Freud
Vail correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
Kristin Anderson/Vail DailyAspen's Danielle Brownell-Patty, downhill skis and all, approaches a jump during the Junior Olympics super G Sunday at Golden Peak on Vail Mountain. Brownell-Patty won the race for her second win in as many days.
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VAIL, Colo. – Aspen’s Danielle Brownell-Patty was understandably distracted during inspection before Sunday’s J3 Junior Olympics super G at Vail.

“I had a lot on my mind,” she said. “This morning, my mom kind of ran over my super G skis. But that’s OK. I realize I can perform well under pressure and just let everything go and it’s going to happen one way or another.”

Brownell-Patty kept talking like her mother running over her skis before a race was a normal thing. Apparently, Belinda was loading the car, leaned the super G skis against the back, let the dogs out and forgot about the boards when it was time to get to the course.

As a result, Danielle Brownell-Patty raced on her downhill skis, and those worked just fine. The Aspen racer won the super G in 52.54 seconds for her second JO gold in as many days, having won the downhill as well on Saturday.

On Brownell-Patty’s right downhill ski, Belinda had written, “Even faster than the other skis. I love you.”

Ski and Snowboard Club Vail’s Caroline Byrne grabbed silver in 53.28 for her team’s second medal of the JOs. Aspen’s Julia Mueller-Ristine was third (53.34), nabbing her second medal of the week – she was second in the downhill.

“All colors,” Mueller-Ristine joked. “I saw that it was pretty turny, but you just had to set up and go.”

Eleven racers out of 69 didn’t finish the technical course. The jump after I-70 was the particular challenge in both the boys and girls races. And this is where some experience won out.

Byrne bounced back from a tie for ninth in the downhill to finish second.

“I did well in training. I don’t know what happened yesterday,” Byrne said. “I got caught up a little in the snow. I just was late. I chose No. 3 today and did really well. I like going early. It was good. I just like to go. It’s good. I wish I got first, but Dani’s fast.”

“Caroline was awesome,” SSCV coach J.J. Jensen said. “We put together a game plan for her and she just executed it.”

The key for all was to get forward to take the turns.

“I knew that I get late a lot and I have problems on the steeps some times,” Brownell-Patty said. “I have troubles with that. I was looking for that. The jump, I know just not to over-think. It was fun.”

And for the second day in a row, Aspen put two racers on the podium.

“I was going for first place just because everyone wants first place, but I’m really happy I’m on the podium,” Mueller-Ristine said. “You know, (Brownell-Petty)’s a great skier. She’s my teammate and Aspen’s on the podium once again. It’s great.”

SSCV had a good day with Erika McCormick surging to fourth place. She’s been skiing better as the week has progressed. Teammate Olivia Swift was seventh, giving the locals three in the top 10.

Buck Hill’s Jessica Reinhart finished fifth, followed by independent Suzanne Lyon. Breckenridge’s Katy Harris was eighth with Great Lakes’s Gabby Gencheff and Duluth’s Megan Danelski going 9-10, respectively.

The girls have giant slalom Monday with the first run at 10 a.m. and the second roughly around noon. Brownell-Patty will be the favorite because she says GS is her best event.

And since apparently the idea of running over Brownell-Patty’s skis over with a car is no longer an option when it comes to figuring out a way to stop the Aspen skier, the field will be trying to find another way. The double-gold winner will be bringing her GS skis today.

“I’m just not going to let her put them in the car,” Brownell-Patty joked.

cfreud@vaildaily.com


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