Maria Riesch takes fifth World Cup win of the season on Are, Sweden
Straight from the World Championships in Garmisch, the HEAD ladies carried on their winning ways as Maria Riesch came from second in the Super G section to win the race after the slalom section. Lindsey Vonn won the Super G section after spending the time since the World Championships at a Wellness Hotel to recuperate from her head injury before the World Championships. Vonn dropped down to sixth after the slalom as Lizz Goergl held on to her third place in the first run to secure third in the race. While the much anticipated Riesch and Vonn contest did not happen in Garmisch, the two HEAD racers are back fighting on the World Cup now.
With the HEAD trio of Vonn, Riesch and Goergl taking the fastest three spots on the first run of Super G, lots was expected for the Slalom. With the fastest three to go it was Tina Maze leading after a blistering slalom run had propelled her to the top of the standings. Goergl was the first to go and could not quite dislodge Maze and went second. Maze had 0.60seconds lead on Riesch but it was Riesch who grabbed the lead four tenths up. With Vonn needing to chase World Cup points in the race for the overall title, this was a classic gladiatorial set up.
Vonn has struggled this year with her Slalom and while she managed to make it to the finish, her Super G lead dwindled away and she posted sixth best combined time. This was the first time since 2008 that she had not been on the podium for a Super Combined.
"I'm very happy with myself today because it was a long time since I last won a super combined. But also my good super G run showed me I was heading in the right direction and hopefully set the tone for the weekend," Riesch told Reuters. "There are still lots of points to fight for and we're both going to claim our share. But I'm going to fight for every one."
"The super G was solid, aggressive and just like I know I can ski. I was driving my skis the whole way down and definitely feeling back to my normal self," said Vonn. “It's going to be a battle for the overall title until the last race of season. I've still got a lot of fighting to do."
With this win, Riesch has taken the lead in the Super Combined with Goergl and Vonn in equal second. Riesch has now extended her lead in the Overall by a further 60 points to lead with 1356 points to Vonn’s 1140 and Lizz Goergl in third with 738.
1. Maria Riesch (GER) HEAD
2. Tina Maze
3. Lizz Goergl (AUT) HEAD
4. Anja Paerson (SWE) HEAD
6 Lindsey Vonn (USA) HEAD
9 Anna Fenninger (AUT) HEAD
14 Margret Altacher (AUT) HEAD
23 Marianne Abderholden (SUI) HEAD
25 Wendy Holdener (SUI) HEAD