Switzerland’s Feuz wins WC downhill in Lake Louise; Aspen’s Wiley Maple is 39th
LAKE LOUISE, Alberta (AP) — World champion Beat Feuz of Switzerland won the season-opening men’s World Cup downhill on Saturday.
Feuz finished in 1 minute, 43.76 seconds to edge Austria’s Matthias Mayer of Austria by just under a tenth of a second. Norway’s Aksel Lund Svindal was third.
“I’ve fallen twice in Lake Louise, but this is also the second time I’ve been on the podium,” Feuz said. “With the Rocky Mountains and everything, it’s a great place for me.”
In memory of French skier David Poisson, who died Nov. 13 in a training accident at nearby Nakiska ski resort, the racers had heart-shaped stickers with his initials on their helmets and their race bibs bore his name.
“I’m really happy to see that the whole ski family stood together and also that the French team participated today,” Feuz said. “The stickers on the bib and the helmet is a beautiful gesture to remember David.”
Adrien Theaux topped the Frenchmen in seventh.
“That was gutsy, brave, but an important decision not only for the French guys, but for all of us,” Svindal said. “Them being so brave about it makes it easier for other teams. No one would have gained from us canceling this race and going home.”
Bryce Bennett was the top American, finishing 21st, while Jared Goldberg was 24th. Aspen’s Wiley Maple was 39th in 1:46.27, besting U.S. Ski Team members Travis Ganong (48th), Andrew Weibrecht (51st) and Thomas Biesmeyer (62nd). Veteran Steven Nyman, who is still coming back from injury, did not compete.
A men’s super-G is scheduled for today at Lake Louise.
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It’s that time of year — hikers and mountain bikers must be aware that seasonal closures are taking effect on multiple trails in the area for the winter for the benefit of wildlife.