Marno grabs super-G championship | SteamboatToday.com

Marno grabs super-G championship

Steamboat Springs and U.S. Ski Team skier Anna Marno cuts down the super-G course at the U.S. Alpine National Championships in Sun Valley, Idaho. Marno went on to win the race, capturing the national title.

— It wasn't shocking, Anna Marno said, and it wasn't pivotal in her career.

Marno, a Steamboat Springs skier, roared down the course to win the U.S. Alpine National Championship super-G on Thursday in Sun Valley Idaho, perhaps the best result she's ever had.

It's all a part of the process, she said.

"It's just a really good way to end my year," she said. "It's a great way to leave my season."

Marno finished with a time of 1 minute, 14.04 seconds, 0.28 ahead of second-place skier Laurenne Ross. Patricia Mangan was third, 0.63 second back.

It's the first Alpine national championship result for a Steamboat skier since Caroline Lalive Carmichael won, also in the super-G, at Squaw Valley, Utah, in 2002.

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"I kept my speed carrying really well through the turny sections," Marno said, diagnosing her run. "I really tried to arc everything and stayed really clean, keeping my speed going downhill."

Marno will try to lock up one more podium at the event Sunday, competing in the women's giant slalom. She was also fifth Wednesday in the combined.

For Marno, 23, the win was just another brick in what she's built into a strong season. It's been ups and downs, she said, but as her career has progressed, the ups have gotten higher, and so have the downs.

She had started just two World Cups coming into the winter, one each in 2013 and 2014, and she hadn't actually finished her race in either of them.

This season, she started nine World Cups and, racing super-G Jan. 24 in Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy, scored her first World Cup points, placing 30th.

"It took me a little while to figure it out, to be comfortable," she said, considering the World Cup. "I don't think I necessarily stepped up my skiing, but I got more used to that stage and the competition and everything."

Super-G has remained her best event. She had 32nd- and 33rd-place finishes there to complete her World Cup season. She also ended up seventh overall in the Nor-Am Cup standings and was first on that circuit's super-G points list.

That's all good, she said, but steps such as scoring on the World Cup and winning a national championship are just a part of the process.

"Neither of those things were surprising or more unexpected, but they were reassuring," she said. "It was definitely one of the best seasons I've ever had."

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @JReich9