Manuel Osborne-Paradis nearly hung on for a podium finish at Kvitfjell, Norway, on Saturday (March 2) and recorded his best result of the World Cup season.
The Whistler Mountain Ski Club product finished fourth in the men’s downhill, finishing just one-hundredth of a second outside the top three.
“I’m happy with my result,” said the 29-year-old. “I’ve been fourth before, but never one-hundredth out. It sucks but that’s racing — the clock never lies. Being fourth is just one of those things. It was close but really, I’m five-tenths away from first.”
Osborne-Paradis was the first skier out of the start house on Saturday and put down a time of one minute, 29.61 seconds that topped the field for quite some time. It wasn’t until French skier Adrien Theaux, starting 19th, clocked in a half-second ahead to take Manny out of the lead.
Two of the next three skiers down — Norway’s Aksel Lund Svindal and Austria’s Klaus Kroell — also set quicker times to push Osborne-Paradis off the podium, with Kroell taking bronze by the narrowest of margins.
“I desperately wanted a top 10 and when I came through the finish I was pretty happy with the run,” said Osborne-Paradis, who battled through windy conditions Saturday that forced race officials to shorten the course.
“I didn’t necessarily think it was a winning run but you never know. On a day like today it’s anybody’s race.”
Jan Hudec joined Manny in a podium position after starting ninth and the Canadians sat one-two until Theaux finished. Hudec wound up sixth, while Erik Guay and Ben Thomsen were 26th and 29th, respectively. Whistler’s Pridy brothers also raced on Saturday, with Morgan placing 48th and Conrad finishing 53rd.
The results at Kvitfjell cemented spots in the World Cup finals for both Osborne-Paradis and Hudec. Both were on the bubble heading into Saturday’s race but moved well up the season rankings to finish among the top 25 skiers who will get invites to Lenzerheide, Switzerland, later this month.
Kvitfjell hosts a super-G on Sunday (March 3), with Manny currently sitting 26th in the discipline standings.