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Rebensburg wins women's World Cup GS

 Italy's Federica Brignone speeds down the hill on her way to clock the second fastest time during the first run of an alpine ski, World Cup women's g...
 -- CORRECTS POSITION AFTER FIRST RUN TO THIRD -- Italy's Manuela Moelgg speeds down the hill on her way to clock the third fastest time during the fi...
 Germany's Viktoria Rebensburg speeds down the hill on her way to clock the fastest time during the first run of an alpine ski, World Cup women's gian...

Czech Republic Alpine Skiing World Cup

Italy's Federica Brignone speeds down the hill on her way to clock the second fastest time during the first run of an alpine ski, World Cup women's g...

CORRECTION Czech Republic Alpine Skiing World Cup

-- CORRECTS POSITION AFTER FIRST RUN TO THIRD -- Italy's Manuela Moelgg speeds down the hill on her way to clock the third fastest time during the fi...

Czech Republic Alpine Skiing World Cup

Germany's Viktoria Rebensburg speeds down the hill on her way to clock the fastest time during the first run of an alpine ski, World Cup women's gian...

Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany won the penultimate women's World Cup giant slalom of the season as Lindsey Vonn of the United States narrowed the overall World Cup lead of Germany's Maria Riesch.
It was the third career victory for Rebensburg, who took the lead after the opening run and was also fastest in the second on the Black course to finish with a combined time of 2 minutes, 15.22 seconds. The win moved her to the top of the discipline standings.
"I'm really happy. It was a good race for me, it couldn't be better," Rebensburg said.
With one more giant slalom to come, Rebensburg leads with 435 points. Tessa Worley of France, who was leading before Friday's race with 358 points, skied off in the first round and is second.
Denise Karbon of Italy was second, 1.26 seconds behind and three-time overall defending champion Vonn was 1.45 back in third for her first GS podium.
Vonn produced her best giant slalom result at the right time to reduce the overall World Cup lead of her major rival and friend Riesch from 96 to 38 points. There are still five more races to come this season and the battle for the overall title remains wide open.
"I got the monkey off my back in GS," said Vonn. "Hopefully, I can keep improving. It gives me a lot of confidence going to the finals."
Vonn looked determined and showed a return to form last week in Tarvisio, Italy. There, the American clinched the super-G, super-combined and downhill discipline titles on successive days.
"I've been trying my whole career to get to top three in a giant slalom. It means a lot to me. It feels amazing," Vonn said. "It couldn't be at better a time."
Riesch, who was dominating the World Cup earlier this season, had to settle for just two bronze medals _ downhill and super-G _ at the world championships in her hometown of Garmish-Partenkirchen last month.
On Friday, she appeared upset with a question about her World Cup title aspirations.
"I don't want to talk about it any more," Riesch said. "I'm just talking about it over and over and I'm getting crazy with this."
The previous best GS result for Vonn was the fourth place at Aspen, United States in 2008.
"I just tried to ski the best I can in both runs. It was the first time I finally had two clean runs from the top to the bottom."
After placing eighth in the first run, Vonn was cruising down the course in the second, clocking the second-best time of 1:09.04 for a combined 2:16.67.
It was a different story for Riesch who lost her balance and almost missed a gate halfway through the second run before she returned to finish the race in a disappointing 29th place.
"I made a huge mistake," Riesch said. "I actually went out and I just skied on to get at least some points. You never know what's going on in the end."
She got two points while Vonn collected 60 for her third place.
"Today, it's a very bad day for me," Riesch said. "I try to concentrate on tomorrow and do it better."
Vonn, who started behind Riesch in the second run said she didn't know about her rival's problem.
"I actually thought she was winning because the crowd was really excited and I couldn't understand what they were saying so I had to assume she was winning," Vonn said.
"I had the same approach in the second run as I did in the first run. I just tried to be aggressive, to ski with clean arcs, and it worked well."
The skiers with low-numbered bibs seemed to benefit in the first run that took place in light rain and warm conditions with the temperature above freezing.
Vonn made a mistake on the lower part of the course.
"I think that cost me some time but overall that was a good first run," Vonn said. "It looks like it's getting slower and slower. It's harder and harder for people to come in with fast times.
Vonn said a crash she had in slalom training on Wednesday that left her with a bruise just under her left eye didn't limit her skiing.
"It just looks bad but it doesn't affect my skiing in any way," Vonn said. "Every time I train a GS or slalom, it's always something."
The American hit her head in a crash in early February while practicing for the giant slalom in Austria, and was then forced to skip the second half of last month's world championships to recover from a mild concussion.
"I will try to approach tomorrow's race in the same way I did today," Vonn said.
"She 's definitely smelling something," U.S. women's coach Alex Hoedlmoser said about Vonn.
"Right now, she's skiing up to what she's able to. She's behind and she's got nothing to lose."
A slalom is scheduled at the northern Czech resort for Saturday before the women's circuit moves to Lenzerheide, Switzerland for the March 16-20 World Cup finals.


Updated : 2021-10-24 06:05 GMT+08:00