Mon, Jan 23, 2006 - Page 18 News List

Dorfmeister wins mind game in downhill event

WINTER SPORTS Michaela Dorfmeister worked with a mental trainer to become better prepared for pressure

AP , ST. MORITZ, SWITZERLANDAP, KITZBUEHEL, AUSTRIAAP, SAPPORO, JAPANAP, OBERSTDORF. GERMANYAP, ST. MORITZ, SWITZERLANDAP, WINTE

Japan's Daiki Ito was second yesterday with jumps of 137.5m and 128m for 280.9 points, while compatriot Takanobu Okabe was third with 258 points after jumps of 117.5m and 137.5m.

Ito, a member of Japan's Olympic ski jumping team, had a solid jump in his first attempt but couldn't close the gap with Ljoekelsoey on his second attempt.

Many of the top jumpers, including overall World Cup leader Jakub Janda of the Czech Republic and defending world champion Janne Ahonen of Finland, decided to sit out this event.

Bjoern Einar Romoeren of Norway, who won Saturday's event, finished fifth with 247.2 points after jumps of 122.5m and 126.5m.

Janda leads the overall standings with 872 points, followed by Ahonen with 755. With yesterday's win, Ljoekelsoey moved into third place with 590 points.

Tobias Angerer won his fifth straight cross-country skiing World Cup race by taking victory in a men's double pursuit event on Saturday.

The German finished the two 15km legs, one classical and one freestyle, in 1 hour, 14 minutes, 9.7 seconds. He edged Sweden's Anders Sodergren by 0.4 seconds, while Germany's Rene Sommerfeldt was third, 25.2 back.

Beckie Scott of Canada won a women's double pursuit of two 7.5km legs in 39:44.3 by pulling away from three rivals on the final hill.

Germany's Claudia Kuenzel was second, 6.7 back, and Katerina Neumannova of the Czech Republic was 15.5 behind to finish third.

Marit Bjorgen of Norway did not enter, but retained her lead in the World Cup standings with 645 points to Russia's Julija Tchepalova at 580.

Angerer is comfortably ahead of Tor Arne Hetland in the men's standings. He has 685 points to the Norwegian's 455.

"He has to belong now to the Olympic favorites, but we are glad to be in that position," Germany coach Jochen Behle said of Angerer.

Germany's Andre Lange and brakeman Kevin Kuske rallied from sixth after the opening heat to win a two-man World Cup bobsled race on Saturday.

The competition also counted as the European Championships.

Lange, who missed the last World Cup in Koenigssee, Germany, started 13th in the opening heat on the world's only natural bobsled track and clocked 1 minute, 6.93 seconds. The pair produced a track record 1:06.17 in the second run for a total of 2:13.10.

The Germans finished 0.11 seconds ahead of opening run leaders Ivo Rueegg and brakeman Cedric Grand of Switzerland.

The Swiss posted runs of 1:06.74 and 1:06.47 for an aggregate time of 2:13.21 and European championship silver.

Another Swiss pair, Martin Annen and Beat Hefti, took bronze with runs of 1:06.77 and 1:06.75 for a total 2:13.52.

Canada's Pierre Lueders and Lascalles Brown were tied with Rueegg in 1:06.74 after the first heat. But like several other teams, the Canadians grazed the side of the track exiting the first turn and finished the second run in 1:06.83 for a total of 2:13.57 and fourth place.

World Cup leader Todd Hays and brakeman Brock Kreitzburg of the US made a similar mistake at the same place but also struggled to get the push bar down in time after loading, leaving them in fifth. The Americans clocked 1:06.79 then 1:06.85 for 2:13.75.

Silke Kraushaar led the latest German sweep in the women's singles at the European luge championships on Saturday.

Kraushaar fought through thick snowfall to win in 1 minute, 30.607 seconds.

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