Todd Lodwick and Michael Ward go 1-2 in the Continental Cup at Soldier Hollow. Photo: Riley Steinmetz/USSA
SOLDIER HOLLOW, UT (Dec. 14) – Olympic medalist and world champion Todd Lodwick (Steamboat Springs, CO) climbed back to the top of the podium at the FIS Nordic Combined Continental Cup at Soldier Hollow. Lodwick, who is taking a break from the World Cup circuit after a difficult 2011-12 season, started the cross country final in 13th but quickly caught up with France's Wilfried Cailleau, who ultimately finished third. Lodwick's teammate, Michael Ward (Aspen, CO), finished second in a career best finish.
Todd Lodwick (Steamboat Springs, CO) won the FIS Nordic Combined Continental Cup in a large fashion, overtaking France's Wilfried Cailleau, who started the cross country event in first, in the opening laps and never relinquishing the lead.
Lodwick, an Olympic silver medalist, is returning to nordic combined after struggling with asthma during the 2011-12 season.
Michael Ward (Aspen, CO) finished second, a career best finish
The U.S. Ski Team had four athletes finish in the top 20, with Nick Hendrickson (Park City, UT) finishing 17th and Brett Denney (Steamboat Springs, CO) 18th.
The Continental Cup is a stepping stone series to the FIS Nordic Combined World Cup with finishes by Lodwick and Ward vital to U.S. World Cup quotas.
Todd Lodwick This year has been up and down for me so to come back to the States and earn my spot back to World Cup it seemed liked a crescendo to do that over and over again. But, I have great success here and now that we have two on the podium, we have a really, really strong start to this weekend.
I dedicate this victory and the podium to the kids in Connecticut. Being [the parent of] a first grader, it's tough.
Michael Ward It was awesome. It was my best international competition ever. Being able to ski with Todd was an honor. He pushed me to my limit. I'm just so fortunate to have such a great team, great teammates, to push me to be the best. It meant a lot to me to get a podium here in the U.S.