Maier takes super-G again at Kitzbuehel
KITZBUEHEL, Austria – Hermann Maier got a much-needed boost before next month’s Olympics.The two-time Olympic champion won a super-G on the famed Hahnenkamm course Friday, defending his title from last year and getting his second victory of the season.”This course was custom-made for me,” Maier said. “There was a lot of snow in the last two days and it was hard for the skiers with high numbers, but I found the right balance between smooth and aggressive skiing.
“That was the key to winning today’s race.”Reigning World Cup champion Bode Miller flew off course early – another in a series of poor results for the American.Maier, the 29th skier out of the hut, started aggressively on a sun-drenched course that was quickly deteriorating. He won in 1 minute, 22.97 seconds.
Peter Fill of Italy finished 0.05 seconds behind for second and his best career result. Austria’s Hannes Reichelt was third, 0.28 seconds behind.The victory was Maier’s fifth super-G title at Kitzbuehel, bringing his total at the most prestigious stop on the men’s World Cup circuit to six. H also won a downhill in 2001.”I like this hill. This is a very special hill for me,” Maier said. “Every part, I had good times and the turn in the end is much like a downhill. I think I reached 80 mph.”
The win gave the 33-year-old Maier confidence going into the Turin Games. The last time he had won a giant slalom was almost a year ago in Kvitfjell, Norway, while his only previous victory this season came in the opening giant slalom in Soelden, Austria.”Yesterday, I thought two victories would be good,” Maier said. “Now I have it, so I’m happy.”Miller, the reigning overall and super-G champion, went off course on a tricky turn in the top section and was forced to give up on a track that favored his risky style with no jumps until the end.