Michael Walchhofer beat the weather and the opposition to win his second World Cup race of the season in a Super-G on his favorite piste of Val Gardena yesterday.
The 35-year-old Austrian, winner of the first downhill of the season in Lake Louise on Nov. 27, clocked 1 minute, 34.35 seconds to score his fourth victory on the Saslong course on which he won his first Super-G six years ago.
Walchhofer, who has also won two downhills in the Italian resort, upstaged unheralded Stephan Keppler. The German earned his first career podium, 0.67 seconds adrift.
Third place went to Canadian Erik Guay, the discipline’s World Cup champion, who finished 0.81 seconds behind.
Walchhofer will be the clear favorite in today’s downhill, weather permitting, as snow started to fall after the first 15 starters yesterday, probably influencing the outcome.
The Austrian also took the lead in the overall World Cup standings.
Among the favorites, Olympic champion Aksel-Lund Svindal again failed to deliver. The Norwegian was on a par with Walchhofer for most of the race, before crashing out on the final stretch.