Vonn cautious in downhill practice; Stuhec posts best time

Vonn cautious in downhill practice; Stuhec posts best time

ST. MORITZ, Switzerland — Lindsey Vonn took a cautious look at the downhill course Wednesday in the first practice run at world championships and finished more than two seconds behind leader Ilka Stuhec of Slovenia.

“I just wanted to get a feeling for the course,” said Vonn, who was 12th on an overcast morning that made visibility tricky. “I was just skiing down solid and trying to build my confidence again.”

The American failed to complete the super-G race Tuesday and had problems with her right hand, three months after she broke her upper arm.

Two more downhill practices are scheduled before Sunday’s marquee race, and Vonn should get a further look at the slope in the opening downhill leg of the combined race on Friday.

Mirjam Puchner crashed off a jump during Wednesday’s training run and was airlifted from the mountain. The 24-year-old Austrian won the previous downhill held on the 2.6-kilometre (1 3/5-mile) Engiadina course at the World Cup finals last year.

Puchner broke the tibia and fibula in her right leg and suffered a concussion, race organizers said. She underwent surgery at a hospital in St. Moritz.

Race director Atle Skaardal said the jump was judged to be safe after the takeoff and landing areas were evaluated.

In Vonn’s absence this season, Stuhec won the first three World Cup downhills plus a super-G last month.

Stuhec reached the fastest speed Tuesday in the super-G, won by Nicole Schmidhofer of Austria, and got close to 120 kph (75 mph) in downhill practice.

The 26-year-old Slovene was 0.43 seconds faster than Fabienne Suter of Switzerland. Teammate Lara Gut was third fastest, one day after taking super-G bronze.

Another Swiss, Jasmine Flury, was fourth fastest, showing the home team’s comfort level on a slope that regularly hosts its annual national championships.

Still, an American reached the fastest speed when Breezy Johnson topped 121 kph (75 mph).

“It’s a lot of fun,” Johnson said of the course. “The jumps are big but I think they are really pretty well built and none of them are too flat.”

Marie-Michele Gagnon of Lac-Etchemin, Que., was the top Canadian in 23rd place. Valerie Grenier of Mont-Tremblant, Que., was 32nd, Toronto’s Candace Crawford was 43rd and Mikaela Tommy of Wakefield, Que., was tied for 52nd.

Graham Dunbar, The Associated Press

Just Posted

Hang glider pilot rescued from Pincushion Mountain

Pilot was able to help guide rescue crews to her location

Car accident on Leckie Road backs up traffic

An accident involving a bus is blocking traffic driving near Dilworth Mountain

Top Okanagan wedding venue no longer allows wedding ceremonies

Gellatly Nut Farm Regional Park and Kaloya Regional Park will no longer allow the ceremonies

Okanagan College has new entrepaneur-in-residence

Jason Richards, has been involved in a number of start-ups over his career

Kelowna Pride Society looks for community feedback

The society is already planning this year’s festivities

VIDEO: Car flies across median, flips over edge of B.C. overpass

Dash cam footage shows vehicle speeding across Brunette Avenue overpass in Coquitlam

Indigenous energy summit includes session on pipeline ownership options

Steven Saddleback of the Indian Resource Council says a session will feature presentations on financing models

Japanese grand champion Kisenosato retires from sumo

The 32-year-old Kisenosato was the first Japanese-born wrestler in 19 years to gain promotion to sumo’s highest rank

UPDATE: Accused B.C. high school killer found fit to stand trial

Gabriel Klein is accused in the 2016 stabbing death of Letisha Reimer at Abbotsford Senior Secondary

Right-wing, neo-Nazi, white supremacist groups an increasing concern: Goodale

Ten people died in April 2018 when Alek Minassian allegedly drove a rental van down the busy stretch in Toronto

Canadian stock exchanges to conduct lottery for ‘POT’ ticker amid high demand

The symbol became available after fertilizer Potash Corp. officially merged with Agrium Inc. in early 2018

Millennial Money: Don’t let Instagram envy get you into debt

A full 48 per cent of U.S. households have credit card debt

Jury debates fate of man accused of killing 12-year-old B.C. girl 40 years ago

Police allege Garry Handlen told a cop how he abducted, sexually assaulted and strangled Monica Jack in May 1978

Most Read