Janyk sizzles in snow

SUN WIRE SERVICES

, Last Updated: 8:42 AM ET

ASPEN, Colo. -- All it took was a morning walk and Britt Janyk knew the day held promise. The snow was just right, and so was the result.

The Canadian skier won her first World Cup title yesterday, a downhill in which about half the field was unable to complete the race on a snowy, foggy day.

"I walked the course to inspect and started smiling," Janyk said. "It was just like I was used to -- West Coast snow, wet with powder mixed in. I knew I would have a good time and looked forward to pushing out of the start gate."

The winner was followed by Austrians Marlies Schild and Renate Goetschl. Lindsey Vonn of the U.S. was fourth.

"I'm really bummed out," said Vonn, who had the best training times the previous two days. I'm skiing so well and I feel really bad that I couldn't show my stuff to a home crowd. Unfortunately, I'm not good on powder. I am from Minnesota."

Janyk, who trains in Whistler, B.C., finished third at Lake Louise, Alta., last week. She now leads the downhill standings.

"This certainly changes the goals I set before the season," Janyk said.

Janyk covered the Ruthie's Run course in 1:14.17 seconds. Schild, the World Cup points leader, was second in 1:14.59.

"I don't know if I had any advantage skiing first and in these conditions," Schild said. "I didn't have any tips from my coaches because they can't compare the run to anything and I had to judge the course for myself."

The race was held under a light snowfall and only 30 of the 56 skiers finished.

"I would have done better if it hadn't snowed," Vonn said.

Race officials called off the race before 19 skiers were able to ski the course because of fog and poor visibility. Four other skiers chose not to start.

"It was pretty soft and you couldn't see anything," Schild said.

"If you fall, that's really dangerous because it's so soft and if you push too much you're skis don't react to you."

Austria's Alexandra Meissnitzer and France's Anne-Sophie Barthet took spills and did not finish. Barthet dislocated knee cap.

Meissnitzer, competing in her 300th World Cup race, sustained a bone bruise.

"We have to deal with a ton of conditions," Janyk said.

TWO MORE MEDALS

Kristina Groves of Ottawa raced to a silver medal in the 1,500 metres while Christine Nesbitt of London, Ont., earned the bronze at a speedskating World Cup in Heerenven, Netherlands.


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