Svindal leads final Lake Louise downhill training run


Svindal in the finish following the final training run (GEPA/Christopher Kelemen)

Svindal in the finish following the final training run (GEPA/Christopher Kelemen)

When Aksel Lund Svindal claimed last season’s super G and downhill titles, he got off to a fast start, sweeping the first events in those disciplines at Lake Louise and never looking back.

This season a nasty cold kept him from getting in any freeskiing at Lake Louise and he had to drag himself out of bed to enter the first official training run, where he finished in 16th place, nearly a full second off the pace. A power outage gave him a day off, and he then registered the fastest training run on Friday (Nov. 29) in the final test before the first speed races of the 2014 World Cup season get underway for the men.

The run came on a shortened course due to fog and the resulting limited visibility. Svindal proved to be the fastest in the third and final training run before the opening salvo in this season’s Winterstart races at Lake Louise, finishing a slim .14 ahead of Austrian Georg Streitberger in second and .45 ahead of Bode Miller in third.

After a season away from ski racing, the result for Miller is very encouraging. Steven Nyman, second in the first training run, finished ninth indicating he has refined his game a bit as well.

It wasn’t a great day for the hosting Canadians who had to be content with Manuel Osborne-Paradis leading the squad in 25th and first training run winner Erik Guay one place behind in 26th.

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