Aspen’s Casey Puckett fourth in French skiercross |

Aspen’s Casey Puckett fourth in French skiercross

LES CONTAMINES, France – A turn away from the first World Cup win of his career, Casey Puckett of Aspen had to settle for fourth when he crashed Sunday morning in Les Contamines, France.

Puckett led in his second final group of the 2010 skiercross season – originally scheduled for Saturday but delayed due to heavy fog – from the outset, and appeared to be home free when he lost control squatting into a turn and suffered the fluky fall.

Skiercross coach Tyler Shepherd said he wasn’t sure what happened, and he would look at the replay later.

“It’s ski cross, sometimes that’s the way it goes,” he said.

France’s Xavier Kuhn skied past Puckett for the win.

Caitlin Ciccone (Littleton, N.H.) was 23rd in a woman’s race won by Canada’s Ashleigh McIvor, marking the best result of Ciccone’s career.

“We just need to figure out how to get her out of the start faster,” Shepherd said. “She’s a fast skier, we just have to get her up in front.”

Daron Rahlves (Sugar Bowl, Calif.) skipped out on the chance to improve on a career-best second place in St. Johann, Austria, last week, opting instead to train at home before a return to the World Cup circuit in Lake Placid, N.Y., on Jan. 21.

The U.S. squad has one more event – in Alpe d’Huez, France, on Wednesday – before a return to North America for races in Blue Mountain, Ontario and Lake Placid, N.Y.

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