Austria’s Schmidhofer wins Lake Louise downhill
LAKE LOUISE, Canada: Austrian Nicole Schmidhofer won the women’s alpine World Cup downhill at Lake Louise on Saturday, her time of 1min 49.92sec holding up to a fierce challenge from US superstar Mikaela Shiffrin.
Schmidhofer continued her outstanding form in the Canadian Rockies, where she won both World Cup downhills last season on the way to claiming the World Cup downhill crown. But three-time overall World Cup champion Shiffrin nearly knocked Schmidhofer off the top step of the podium with a bravura run.
Shiffrin, whose stellar career is founded on her technical prowess, was faster at every split on the course but crossed the finish line in second with a time of 1:50.05 — 13-hundredths of a second behind Schmidhofer.
Italy’s Francesca Marsaglia was third in 1:50.35. Dual-threat Czech Ester Ledecka, who roared to victory from the 26th starting position in Friday’s first downhill of the season, settled for fourth in 1:50.37.