Berliner Tageblatt - Suter confirms Swiss dominance with Olympic downhill gold

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Suter confirms Swiss dominance with Olympic downhill gold
Suter confirms Swiss dominance with Olympic downhill gold / Photo: ©

Suter confirms Swiss dominance with Olympic downhill gold

Corinne Suter confirmed Switzerland's alpine skiing dominance at the Beijing Olympics on Tuesday when she streaked to victory in the women's downhill for the country's fourth gold in the mountains.

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The 27-year-old world champion clocked 1min 31.87sec down the "Rock" course in Yanqing, finishing 0.16sec ahead of defending champion Sofia Goggia of Italy, whose silver capped a remarkable return to form after she injured her knee in a crash last month.

A second Italian, Nadia Delago, claimed bronze, 0.57sec adrift of Suter.

Suter's win followed gold-medal showings by teammate Lara Gut-Behrami in the women's super-G, and Marco Odermatt and Beat Feuz in the men's giant slalom and downhill respectively.

Gut-Behrami, who has also won giant slalom bronze in these Games, had complained of fatigue coming into the downhill and it showed as she limped through the line 2.16sec off the pace.

"That's sport," said Gut-Behrami, adding that she was "happy" with her Olympics. "It doesn't take much to be slow. I was a little bit too hard on my skis.

"I tried to improve my speed, but it didn't happen."

Turning to Suter, Gut-Behrami said: "She's always been consistent and has worked so hard.

"Since the world championships in Are in 2019 she has found the right way: great speed and aggressivity, and great feelings. And she is getting medals at big events."

After skiing out of her favoured events of the slalom and giant slalom, American Mikaela Shiffrin enjoyed a rare outing in the ultimate speed event, with one eye on Thursday's alpine combined, which incorporates a downhill followed by a slalom.

Shiffrin attacked, as she had done in training, but ultimately finished well off the pace as the out-and-out downhillers showcased their expertise.

Czech cross-code star Ester Ledecka had failed in her bid to claim a back-to-back Olympic super-G title just days after she retained her snowboard parallel giant slalom title, eventually finishing fifth.

And her downhill was quickly over as she skied wide on one turn, a mistake that cost her two seconds.

"That’s skiing, one little mistake and it’s like this," said Ledecka.

"It doesn’t feel very nice, but that’s sport, that’s part of the game, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose."

Germany's Kira Weidle had impressed in the two training runs, but the world silver medallist was disappointed after finishing 0.14sec off the podium in fourth.