Innerhofer wins again on "his" slope
GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, Germany – After winning three medals at the 2011 World Championships in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, it was no secret that Christof Innerhofer enjoys racing in the German resort and today he once again proved how comfortable he felt on the Kandahar slope.
With a time of 1 minute, 37.83 seconds the Italian, won his third Downhill race of the season equaling the Italian record of three men's World Cup downhill wins in one season, set by Kristian Ghedina in the 1996/97 season.
The big surprise of the day came down with bib number 30, Georg Streitberger charged down the slope to cross the finish line in second place, a mere 0.12 seconds slower than Innerhofer. He also pushed teammates Klaus Kroell in third (0.16 behind Innerhofer) and Hannes Reichelt in fourth place.
Innerhofer was not at the top of his game this morning when skiers got the chance to do a mini training run on the first 30 seconds of the slope. A section they didn’t have the chance to try out in the training days due to the weather conditions.
“This morning on the training run I was far from fast,” Innerhofer said. “I was thinking how it would be impossible to win by going that slow in the top section. I tried not to think about it and to focus on the race, I knew the steep part is where I can do my best and I knew that’s where I needed to make up the time I might have lost at the top. On the last jump I felt confident that I had a good run but I really had no idea it would be fast enough for a victory.”
For Innerhofer this season the saying “less is more” seems to be proving right, as he didn’t train much this summer due to back pain but he also has never won more than this season.
“I struggled a lot during the preparation period, to think I won three times after not being sure if I would even be here this season is something very special. All I want to keep thinking about is how to keep this momentum and get faster every race.”
“It’s a perfect day,” Streitberger couldn’t stop smiling. “My last podium was in Kitzbuehel in 2011 and since then I struggled with an injury and to come back and finish on the podium is amazing. I was very fast in the first section, than I might have lost the victory in the middle due to some small mistakes but altogether it’s an incredible day.”
“A podium is always a podium and I am happy, it’s always good to know that I cam be among the best. Everyone still talks about that fourth place at the World Championships in Schladming and of course a medal would have been great but I am skiing well, feeling well and definitely plan on keeping attacking these last few races of the season.
The double Austrian podium in today’s race wrote history as by reaching 501 men's World Cup downhill podiums it became the first country to reach over 500 World Cup podiums in any discipline, in either gender.
Tomorrow the action in GAP continues with the men’s Giant Slalom race and we are foreseeing once again a Ligety vs. Hirscher battle down to the last hundreds.