Women’s super-G title will be decided in Aspen, men’s overall standings already set
Kjetil Jansrud won’t have long to ponder what could have been in Wednesday’s downhill race. Today he will reap the super-G crown.
Jansrud was leading the downhill standings by 33 points going into Wednesday’s World Cup Final downhill. He finished 11th and was overtaken by Italian Peter Fill for the crystal globe, awarded to the racer with the most points in each discipline.
No such drama exists in the super-G. Jansrud has a 126-point lead over countryman Aleksander Aamodt Kilde. The winner of a race gets 100 points, so Kilde cannot overtake Jansrud.
Several racers are bunched up for the third position overall, including Dominik Paris, the Italian racer who won the downhill race in Aspen. Dominik said after his downhill victory he was eager to try to pick up points in the super-G.
Fill, on the other hand, wasn’t so sure how much he will have left in the gas tank today. “(Thursday) will be a hard race for me,” he acknowledged.
The women’s super-G overall title is coming down to the wire. Ilka Stuhec of Slovenia leads Tina Weirather of Liechtenstein by just 15 points.
Stuhec could exit this season with three overall titles. She won the downhill overall Wednesday. She has a 20-point lead in the combined (which isn’t among the races at the World Cup Finals) to go with the 15-point lead in the super-G.
Weirather has a bit of history on her side. Her father, Hartmann “Harti” Weirather, was a racer for Austria who specialized in the downhill. He won on America’s Downhill in Aspen in 1981. Her mother, Hanni Wenzel, was a top racer for Liechtenstein.
American Lindsey Vonn isn’t in the hunt for titles, but she’s fine-tuning after returning from injury. She finished second in Wednesday’s downhill and is looking forward to running the super-G course. The flats at the top of the downhill course will be eliminated for the super-G.
“I’m not sure if that was my start in itself because of my arm or my skis or what, but I think I skied technically very well on the bottom and made up some time,” Vonn said. “But I’m really excited for (today) because we don’t have the flats on the top, so hopefully I can just cut that part out and have a much faster time.”
Race officials said the course held up well Wednesday despite the warm temperatures. FIS Race Director Atle Skaardal said the conditions remained “equal” through the women’s race, when temperatures really soared. The temperatures were in the low 40s at the start of the men’s race and climbed into the 60s for the women’s race.
Chief of Race Jim Hancock said 90 percent of the course was “rock hard” and just the lower portion was soft. The challenge, he said, might come later in the week when temperatures are forecast to stay above freezing at night. The technical events Friday through Sunday are on lower slopes.
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