With less than three weeks of competition left, Anna Fenninger is on a roll. The Olympic champion from Austria overtook Lindsey Vonn in the super-G standings and closed in on Tina Maze at the top of the overall World Cup standings with back-to-back victories in Bulgaria. The 25-year-old Fenninger won Monday's super-G in 1 minute, 14.59 seconds, beating Maze by 0.16 seconds. Vonn was third, 0.28 seconds behind.
Anna Fenninger increased the pressure on World Cup leader Tina Maze with her fourth back-to-back victory in a women’s Super-G in Bansko on Monday. After winning in one minute 14.59 seconds, the Austrian stands only 44 points behind her Slovenian rival and seems to be improving with every race as Maze struggles for her best form. Maze, the 2013 World Cup winner, finished 0.16 seconds behind the big globe holder and the season finale promises to be a nail-biting one between the best two skiers of the winter, who both won two gold medals at the worlds. By contrast, Lindsey Vonn, who staged a sensational comeback by beating the record of 62 World Cup victories following a one-year injury break, looks out of contention as the season draws to a close.
Lindsey Vonn criticized the International Ski Federation Monday for allowing skiers to race in foggy conditions in Bulgaria. The 30-year-old American, who missed nearly two seasons of competition after injuring her right knee in Austria in 2013, accused FIS of restarting the super-G leg of Sunday's combined race too soon. Competing just after a race restart, Vonn finished in a surprise 24th place, with the TV cameras unable to follow her as she skied through a patch of cloud. ''I don't think the conditions were safe enough to be racing - for the fog and also the snow conditions ... I said the fact we were racing in those conditions was a joke,'' Vonn said at the end of the tournament in Bansko.
Kiley McKinnon and Mac Bohonnon gave the United States its first ever World Cup title double in aerials skiing Sunday. McKinnon becomes the first U.S. woman to win the World Cup since Nikki Stone in 1998, while Bohonnon is the first American men's winner since Jeret 'Speedy' Peterson in 2005. ''It's kind of hard to describe what just happened,'' McKinnon said. It just makes me feel so honored to represent the U.S.'' McKinnon secured her title with second place at the final round in Minsk, Belarus, as fellow American Ashley Caldwell took the event win, scoring 99.63 points with a back full-full-full.
Lindsay Vonn was among several leading skiers who felt the conditions were "way too dangerous" as fog caused havoc in the women’s World Cup races at the Bulgarian resort of Bansko this weekend. “It’s a joke, this snow is way too dangerous to ski,” American Vonn, the sport’s most successful woman competitor, told reporters after the first run of a super-combined race on Sunday. The main thing is that I managed to go the finish without hurting myself,” added Vonn, who returned to the World Cup circuit in December after two knee operations. Germany’s 2010 Olympic champion Viktoria Rebensburg and Austria’s Nicole Hosp also criticized the conditions.
GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, Germany (AP) -- Overall leader Marcel Hirscher claimed his fourth straight World Cup giant slalom victory with the discipline's third-biggest winning margin on Sunday. Hirscher navigated the Kandahar course in 2 minutes, 43.23 seconds, beating Germany's Felix Neureuther by a huge 3.28 seconds and 37-year-compatriot Benjamin Raich by 3.44 for his 30th career World Cup victory. It's really unbelievable because I just skied,'' Hirscher said. ''There were other races where I felt much better.'' Hirscher is the first Austrian to achieve the feat of four World Cup giant slalom victories in a row.
By Manuele Lang GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN (Reuters) - Marcel Hirscher achieved a victory margin unseen in the alpine skiing World Cup for 36 years when he won a men’s giant slalom in Garmisch-Partenkirchen by a huge 3.28-seconds on Sunday. Local favorite Felix Neureuther was second while veteran Austrian Benni Raich celebrated turning 37 on Saturday with the third podium spot, 3.44 adrift. Only ski great Ingemar Stenmark had previously won a giant slalom by a wider margin and he did it twice in the 1978-1979 season.
Anna Fenninger of Austria kept up the pressure on overall leader Tina Maze with victory in the women's Alpine combined World Cup race in fog-hit Bansko on Sunday. Fenninger, the overall No. 2, further narrowed the gap with Maze, winning both legs of the race for a combined time of 2 minutes, 5.06 seconds. Racing back-to-back with Maze in the second slalom run, Fenninger nudged the Slovenian by 0.39 seconds on the day - and trimmed the gap in the World Cup overall standings from 84 to 64 points. ''I didn't know I could ski so fast in the slalom - so I'm really happy for that,'' said the 25-year-old Fenninger, who looked emotional on the podium when the Austrian national anthem was played.