Michael Walchhofer wins second Garmisch downhill; Austria sweeps podiumTweet
Michael Walchhofer wins second Garmisch downhill; Austria sweeps podiumMichael Walchhofer of Austria won the Garmisch downhill today, less than 24 hours after winning on the same course yesterday. He led an Austrian sweep of the podium as his countrymen Mario Scheiber and Fritz Strobl finished second and third.
“I think I moved a big step closer to the World Cup downhill title,” said Walchhofer, who has won the last three World Cup races in that discipline.
Walchhofer finished less than a tenth ahead of Scheiber. “I realized he was fast because I saw him attack out of the start hut and in the first turns,” said Walchhofer, who is known as “Mickie” to his fans. “But my strength is to focus on my own run, and not look at others too much.”
Americans Bode Miller and Daron Rahlves were fourth and fifth. That wasn’t enough for the American men to move past the Italian men in the Nation’s Cup standings. The Italians now lead the Americans by 40 points (Austria leads both nations).
“To be five tenths off the win, and have a mistake that cost me probably a second or close to it, that’s frustrating,” said Miller. “I was pretty disappointed today.”
Daron Rahlves says that he more or less has to give up on his goal of winning the World Cup downhill title this season. “It’s definitely out of my grasp,” he said. “I’ve lost a ton of ground missing Wengen not racing.”
Justin Johnson was 40th and Scott Macartney was 52nd. The top Canadian finisher was Erik Guay, in 13th.
Scheiber, who was born in 1983, was on the podium earlier this year at Beaver Creek. “It’s unbelievable,” he said. “My second podium place. I’m very surprised.”
A member of the “World Cup Four” team, Scheiber was hand-picked by Hermann Maier’s coach Andy Evers last year to complete the squad, which consisted of only those Austrians who could vie with Bode Miller for the overall World Cup title.
“I will give my best in the future, and hopefully I will do as well as Hermann Maier,” said Scheiber, a three-event skier who wears the logo of Raiffeisen bank on his headgear, just like Maier does.
Benjamin Raich finished 17th, and says that he will race every downhill for the rest of the season in his effort to catch Bode Miller in the overall standings.
A super G is scheduled for tomorrow, but some forecasts call for stormy weather. Rahlves will start 29th, and Miller will start 31st, right in front of Hermann Maier.
Feb. 19, 2005
1. Michael Walchhofer, AUT 1:56.50
2. Mario Scheiber, AUT 1:56.59
3. Fritz Strobl, AUT 1:56.95
4. Bode Miller, USA 1:57.03
5. Daron Rahlves, USA 1:57.07
6. Andreas Schifferer, AUT 1:57.27
7. Hermann Maier, AUT 1:57.54
8. Kristian Ghedina, ITA 1:57.85
9. Peter Fill, ITA 1:57.86
10. Kurt Sulzenbacher, ITA 1:57.94
11. Ambrosi Hoffmann, SUI 1:58.02
11. Marco Buechel, LIE 1:58.02
13. Erik Guay, CAN 1:58.06
14. Yannick Bertrand, FRA 1:58.10
15. Juerg Gruenenfelder, SUI 1:58.14
16. Christoph Gruber, AUT 1:58.15
17. Benjamin Raich, AUT 1:58.27
18. Patrik Jaerbyn, SWE 1:58.29
19. Johann Grugger, AUT 1:58.31
20. Bruno Kernen, SUI 1:58.34
20. Finlay Mickel, GBR 1:58.34
22. Florian Eckert, GER 1:58.50
23. Didier Defago, SUI 1:58.54
24. Alessandro Fattori, ITA 1:58.59
25. Silvan Zurbriggen, SUI 1:58.63
26. Klaus Kroell, AUT 1:58.75
27. Werner Franz, AUT 1:58.76
28. Tobias Gruenenfelder, SUI 1:58.95
29. Manuel Osborne, CAN 1:59.00
30. Patrick Staudacher, ITA 1:59.04
other North Americans:
31. John Kucera, CAN 1:59.50
40. Justin Johnson, USA 2:00.38
42. Jeff Hume, CAN 2:00.47
47. David Anderson, CAN 2:01.39
50. Scott Macartney, USA 2:02.34
By Hank McKee
Men’s DH, Garmisch, Germany, Feb. 19, 2005 Skier, skis/boots/bindings
1 Walchhofer, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
2 Scheiber, Atomic/Lange/Atomic
3 Strobl, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
4 Miller, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
5 Rahlves, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
6 Schifferer, Fischer/Lange/Fischer
7 Maier, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
8 Ghedina, Fischer /Lange/Tyrolia
9 Fill, Dynastar/Tecnica/Look
10 Sulzenbacher, Rossignol/Lange/Rossignol
Men’s Downhill, Garmisch, Germany, Feb. 19, 2005. … It is the 26th race of the men’s 35 race, two combined World Cup schedule. … It is the 9th of 11 scheduled downhills. … It is the second of a three race set scheduled for Garmisch. … … Winning margin is less than a tenth of a second. … Top six skiers are within a second. … Top 20 within two seconds.
It is the sixth career World Cup win for Michael Walchhofer. … His fourth in DH. … It is his fourth win of the season. … His third DH win of the season. … And the third consecutive DH he has won. … He joins Stephan Eberharter and Franz Klammer as Austrians to have won more than one Garmisch DH. … Swiss Roland Collombin won 3 times.
It is a career best finish for Mario Scheiber. … It is his second career podium after a 3rd in SG at Beaver Creek 12/2. … He has 13 Cup scoring results. … All of them this season.
It is the 25th career scoring podium for Fritz Strobl. … His third this season. … It is his fourth career podium at Garmisch dating to 2001when he won. … It is the third podium sweep of the season by the Austrian men.
In 20 scoring results this season – including World Championships – Bode Miller has been top 5 in 17. … It is his sixth top 4 in DH, all this season. … With nine races remaining on the schedule, he leads the overall standings by 167pts. … It is the 32nd career top five for Daron Rahlves. … The eighth top 5 this season – not including 2 World Championship podiums. … It is his second 5th place in two days. … It is the seventh top 13 finish for Erik Guay. … Three of them coming at Garmisch. … And five coming this season. … It is the fourth career scoring result for Manuel Osborne. … All of them coming after Jan. 7 this year. … John Kucera missed his 2nd career DH score by a tenth. …
Miller leads the overall standings 1203-1036 over Benjamin Raich (17th in race). … Rahlves is next best American in fifth place with 606. … Walchhofer leads the DH standings 631-488 over Miller. … Rahlves is fourth. … With 2 DH’s remaining, only Miller can mathematically overtake Walchhofer. … The Austrian men lead the Nations Cup 6550-2325 over Italy. … The U.S. men are third at 2285.