|ST. MORITZ, Switzerland (Dec. 15) - Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) reclaimed the World Cup downhill points lead Saturday, finishing second in a downhill on the 2003 World Championships course. In a repeat of their 2007 World Championships downhill race, Anja Paerson of Sweden won with Vonn runner-up in single-digit cold. WCSN.com will Webcast coverage on demand.World champion Paerson posted a winning time of 1:39.32. Vonn finished in 1:39.40 and her close friend Maria Riesch of Germany was third. Julia Mancuso (Olympic Valley, CA) was 10th with Stacey Cook (Mammoth Mountain, CA) 27th.|
"I made a little mistake in the middle section and that cost me the win. I caught an edge and lost my line a little bit. It wasn't big but with eight-hundredths of a second [her differential from Paerson], it doesn't take much. On the whole, though, I'm pretty happy with my skiing," Vonn said.
She plans to spend Christmas in Europe, visiting again with Riesch and her family in Germany. "Maria's a good friend and we enjoy hanging out. It was so cool to be on the podium together, although I wish we'd been 1-2 - with me No. 1," Vonn laughed. "Her family is always so welcoming to me, so it'll be a nice holiday."
After three downhills, she has 230 points to Canadian Britt Janyk's 182. Vonn won the season's first downhill in Lake Louise two weeks ago and was fourth at the Audi Aspen Winternational last weekend in Aspen, CO. Overall, she's fifth in the points after nine races.
"There are two sections you have to nail to be fast - in the middle and the lower section. I didn't get it today, but maybe tomorrow" in the super G, she said. The super G course was set following the downhill by U.S. Coach Alex Hoedlmoser.
Hoedlmoser said Vonn's mini-miscue "happened right in front of me in the middle part. It was a key section where you needed to set up for a turn. One of her skis hooked up and there was just this little bobble, which cost her. Eight-hundredths of a second can disappear quickly...and other than that she did a great job."
"She was attacking all the way, really charging, and definitely was in the hunt again. A little bobble like that happens sometimes when you're going for it like she was," he said.
Mancuso skied the upper section well but uncharacteristically had a problem in the middle. "She usually skis the middle well because it's a technical part, but she got back on her skis in a key section and that cost 'Jules' speed for the bottom of the run," he explained. "She's coming, though. We're getting some things figured out with her equipment and she's definitely going in the right direction now."
The weekend's races were moved from Val d'Isere, France, because of poor snow conditions. The women run a super G Sunday and then head from St. Moritz, the 2003 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships site, to St. Anton, Austria, the 2001 Worlds host, for a downhill and super combined Dec. 21-22.
2008 AUDI FIS ALPINE WORLD CUP
ST. MORITZ, SUI - Dec. 15, 2007
Women's Downhill (shifted from Val d'Isere, FRA)
1. Anja Paerson, Sweden, 1:39.32
2. Lindsey Vonn, Vail, CO, 1:39.40
3. Maria Riesch, Germany, 1:39.65
4. Renate Goetschl, Austria, 1:39.70
5. Fraenzi Aufdenblatten, Switzerland, 1:39.99
10. Julia Mancuso, Olympic Valley, CA, 1:40.74
27. Stacey Cook, Mammoth Mountain, CA, 1:42.17
39. Keely Kelleher, Big Sky, MT, 1:43.10
43. Libby Ludlow, Bellevue, WA, 1:44.09
photos Janos Schmidt