Friday saw another banner day for Bode Miller who added a Super G silver to medals in three other disciplines to become one of the most successful US skiers in the Olympic history. The quadruple World Champion finished just behind Norway’s Aksel Lund Svindal in the second men alpine race of these 21st Winter Games.
Miller added another Olympic medal to his three medals captured in 2002 at Salt Lake City and last Monday in downhill with a breathtaking run down the treacherous and technically demanding Super-G course.
"It is representative of where my ski career has always been at, where my desire has always been at," said Miller, after the race. "I've always believed in skiing all the events and trying to win all the events. I've been a really strong big event skier since I was little."
Miller roared through the top section of the course, going up more than two tenths on USA’s Andrew Weibrecht, the early leader from the third spot. Miller lost some time on the Coach's Corner – a steep, sweeping turn toward the end of the course – but held on to nudge his teammate out of first by a couple of hundredths of a second.
"The first 30 seconds, I was absolutely cutting off the line, the maximum I could do, and made no errors," Miller also said. "I got bounced around a little bit. When the snow changed on the bottom, I ran into the same problem I did in the downhill," added the 32-year-old skier from Franconia who has been using his same 2,16 m downhill skis than earlier this week.
"I thought I would have been fifth or sixth, but when you look at the times, I easily could have been. This is as close as any race I've seen between second and fifth or sixth place. I guess I was on the right side of the hundredths this time.”
One of the fastest at the top, Bode lost some precious time in the lower part where he made some errors as most of the other favorites. Yet he was not upset about this. "Not that it would have made that much difference," Miller revealed. "It may have cleared a couple of hundredths off guys, but I don't think I would have gotten Aksel."
The American veteran, who is competing in his fourth Olympics since 1998, also said he was inspired by the good results of the US women who seem to ski with much fun.
“I think we are feeding off each other and the inspiration level is climbing,” Miller told the press. “You watch Lindsey and Julia ski, and they look like they’re having fun, and on the men’s side, we watch that and say, ‘Hey, we want to feel the same thing.”
Bode was certainly also very excited by his great result as it come on the second birthday of his daughter Dacey who is now playing a major role in his life. “ I felt much more relaxed this morning, her mood is affecting mine despite the distance,” he told US TV. “She is not here and I’m looking forward to get back with her.”
The two-time Overall World Cup champion has a strong chance to increase his collection of Olympic medals with three races left on the schedule including Sunday’s combined event.
“For me the legacy is the way you perform,” he said at the press conference after the downhill race.” I’m truly fired up and ready to fully charge and take this kind of risks. It does open the door for truly inspiring performances.”
“I feel ready to win here. I’m having a great time on the slopes here even when I crash sometimes as I did yesterday while training slalom. “
Asked about his more positive attitude towards the Olympics, Miller also explained that he was basically here doing what he had decided several months ago when he opted to get back on the ski tour after a six-month-break after the Val d’Isère 2009 World Championships. “I’m having a great time here and this is exactly what I have been looking for.”