“If I could have picked two downhills I would have loved to win in my career, it would probably have been Wengen and Beaver Creek. To win them both in the same year is just amazing,” said the 28-year-old Innerhofer.
“Ghedina’s name was on the roll of honor of both races as the last Italian to win them. Now it’s mine. It’s obviously a great morale booster ahead of Kitzbuehel and the world championships in Schladming (from February 5-17),” he added.
Innerhofer was one of the leading lights of the 2011 worlds in Garmisch-Partenkirchen where he won the super-G and finished third in the downhill but later suffered concussion after a crash and struggled to return to his best.
On Saturday, Innerhofer beat two Austrians, 2011 winner Klaus Kroell, who was 0.30 adrift, and Hannes Reichelt, who trailed the Italian by 0.76.
Frenchman Johan Clarey was quickest in the Hanneggschuss, the fastest section on the men’s circuit, and set an unofficial speed record in a men’s World Cup race of 161.9 kph but had to be content with fifth place at the finish.
Norway’s Aksel Lund Svindal, the downhill World Cup leader, crashed after losing a ski shortly after a jump and ended up in the safety nets.
The Norwegian was unhurt but lost precious ground in the overall World Cup, still led by Austria’s Marcel Hirscher, the arch-favorite in Sunday’s slalom at this Swiss resort.
(Editing by Clare Fallon)
CORTINA D’AMPEZZO, Italy (Reuters) – Lindsey Vonn returned to her winning ways after a self-imposed Christmas break when she dominated the Cortina d’Ampezzo downhill for the third time on Saturday.
The American, already crowned in the Italian resort in 2008 and 2010, took her third victory in one minute 38.25 seconds.
While she struggled a bit on her return to competition last weekend in St Anton, Vonn was back to her best on Saturday, collecting her 58th World Cup victory and her fifth this season.
World Cup overall leader Tina Maze continued her unstoppable path towards her first big trophy by finishing second, 0.43 seconds adrift.
The Slovenian now leads nearest contender Maria Hoefl-Reisch by a seemingly unbridgeable 670 points as the German failed to complete the course.
Vonn’s compatriot Leanne Smith was third, 0.89 off the pace, for her second downhill podium of the season.
It was the third time two Americans had been in the top three in the discipline this season and a great confidence booster for the team as this was the last downhill before the Schladming world championships in two weeks’ time.
Vonn, who took a three-week break around New Year to solve health and personal problems, is comfortably leading the downhill World Cup, a title she has won for the past five seasons.
She will again be the favorite in Sunday’s super-G on the same course, a race she has already won four times.
(Editing by Clare Fallon)
Alpine Skiing Roundup: Innerhofer wins Wengen downhill is a post from: PhatzRadio.com