The fastest of the first training run have also put their mark on the second training for the World Cup Downhill on the Saslong: Yesterday, Aksel Lund Svindal (NOR) was 1st ahead of Erik Guay (CAN), today, the Canadian has reversed the order and left the leader of the World Cup, Svindal, lagging behind by 0.22 seconds. Peter Fill was surprisingly strong today (+0.98 secs). The local hero placed 4th behind Manuel Osborne-Paradis (CAN; +0.72 secs).
In the second training run Erik Guay (1:57.48 minutes) and Aksel Lund Svindal (+0.22 seconds) have confirmed their roles as the favourites. Just like in the first training run, the Canadian and the Norwegian have left their competitors far behind and both stayed under 1.58 minutes.
Svindal who just like last year placed 1st and 2nd in the training runs, has won the Super G twice here in Val Gardena (2009 and 2012), but has yet to achieve the podium in the downhill. After the outstanding placements in the training runs it’s high time the World Cup leader places in the top three here. Even Erik Guay has never won here in Val Gardena, but at least he has two podium positions to show.
Manuel Osborne-Paradis placed third behind the two guys who dominated the training run. He won here in 2009 and is a force to be reckoned with on Saturday. Peter Fill came in 4th today. The South Tyrolean from Castelrotto was the best Italian yesterday ranked 19th, but today he showed he is quite capable of a top result. He has never really done well here in the downhill in Val Gardena. His best result: 7th in 2006, however in the Super G. Werner Heel was the second best local who placed in the top 10 (+1.63 seconds).
There was no top placement for the big skiing nations, Austria and Switzerland, today. The best Austrian was Joachim Puchner in 9th place, the best Swiss was Patrick Kueng in 12th. Both lagged about two seconds behind Guay, the winner of the training run.
On Saturday the US Americans, however, will have to be reckoned with: Travis Ganong (5th), Steven Nyman (11st) and Bode Miller (17th) were able to conjure a compact team result.
Tomorrow, Friday, it’s time for the Super-G here in Val Gardena (start at 12.15), the downhill will take place on Saturday at 12.15. We will be commenting both races live again on www.saslong.org.