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Kilde wins home ski race in Norway, locks up super-G title

KVITFJELL, NORWAY(AP) – Aleksander Aamodt Kilde pleased his Norwegian home crowd yesterday by winning a World Cup super-G and locking up the season discipline title with a race to spare.

The Olympic bronze medalist mastered a downhill-like, fast course set on the Oympiabakken hill in sunny conditions to edge James Crawford of Canada by 0.07 seconds.
Olympic super-G champion Matthias Mayer of Austria was 0.12 behind in third.

“To win on home soil, together with the Norwegian crowd, beautiful weather, great conditions, it couldn’t be better,” Kilde said.

It was Kilde’s 13th career win, all in the speed events of downhill and super-G. But it was only his first World Cup win in 18 starts at the Alpine skiing venue of the 1994 Winter Games.

Kilde’s main rival for the super-G title, Marco Odermatt, trailed by 61 points going into the race. But the Swiss skier, whose strongest event is the giant slalom, struggled throughout on the course set by the coach of the Swiss speed team, Manfred Widauer.

Odermatt finished 1.68 behind in 28th and scored just three points. As a result, he dropped to third in the discipline standings, behind Mayer, and neither can now overtake Kilde at the season-ending race in Courchevel on March 17.

Odermatt has gained only 39 points across the three races in Norway this weekend but remains a strong favourite for the World Cup overall title. He still leads runner-up Kilde, the 2019-20 champion, by 189 points with five technical and two speed races remaining.

Kilde was last crowned as the season’s best super-G racer in 2016, making him the seventh male skier to win the prize at least twice.

Two Norwegians achieved the feat earlier: Aksel Lund Svindal, who won it a record five times, and Kjetil Jansrud, who retired after Saturday’s downhill and has three super-G globes.

Dominik Paris finished 0.21 behind in fourth, a day after the Italian won the downhill on the same hill, and Olympic downhill champion Beat Feuz trailed by 0.31 in fifth. The rest of the field was more than seven-tenths of a second off the pace.

Norway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde. PHOTO: AP

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