January 8, 2011
Vonn closes in on Riesch with win
By Manuele Lang, Reuters
ALTENMARKT, Austria - Lindsey Vonn added Altenmarkt to her tally of World Cup downhill victories, winning her fourth race of the season in the Austrian resort on Saturday.
Victory for the American, in one minute 46.39 seconds, saw her take 50 points off World Cup leader Maria Riesch, who finished fourth, 1.05 adrift.
The German leads the overall World Cup standings on 883 points to Vonn’s 747.
Despite the win, world and Olympic champion Vonn was almost left red faced as she neared the finishing line.
“I made a big mistake and nearly ended up in the net. But I still had some speed left from my good upper section and I knew I still had a chance,” Vonn, who has been unable to ski a flawless run this season, told reporters after her 20th downhill win.
Second place on Saturday went to Anja Paerson, who won on the same course two years ago. The Swede, who had not made it to the podium so far this season, missed out on victory by 0.43 seconds.
Austrian Anna Fenninger, her country’s best hope for a few years after winning most junior titles, finally earned her first World Cup podium, 0.98 behind Vonn.
Riesch, who won the first two downhills of the season in Lake Louise, and finished fourth.
Vonn added that another victory was within reach in Sunday’s super-G on the same course if she at last managed to ski a flawless run.
“Tomorrow is another chance to collect 100 points and above all to ski a flawless run at last. If I do, I’ll have my chances,” said the American.
“To be honest, if the snow holds better than it did today, it shouldn’t be a problem.”