Overall champion Kilde takes super-G for 1st win of season

VAL GARDENA, Italy (AP) — Defending overall champion Aleksander Aamodt Kilde won a men’s World Cup super-G on Friday for his first podium result of the season.

The Norwegian was 0.12 seconds faster than Mauro Caviezel, the discipline title holder from Switzerland who won the previous race in the French Alps last week.

Kjetil Jansrud finished third, trailing his Norwegian teammate by 0.21, and Olympic champion Matthias Mayer was 0.34 behind in fourth.

It was Kilde’s fifth career win, and third in super-G. He scooped the overall title last season while winning only one race, a super-G in Austria in February.

“It’s nice to get my first win so soon this time. We can work a bit more relaxed now and hopefully some more wins will follow,” said Kilde, who contracted the coronavirus after the season-opening race in Austria in October.

The Norwegian team usually does well in the Italian resort, winning the super-G for a ninth time. No other nation has more than four race wins in Val Gardena.

“We know this course well. It’s technically demanding and we are all-round skiers, so this suits us,” Kilde said. “The speed is there so if it all fits, you win the race.”

Overall World Cup leader Alexis Pinturault sat out the race. The Frenchman was overtaken by Swiss skier Marco Odermatt, who finished ninth in the race 0.98 seconds behind Kilde.

Odermatt has 290 points and leads Pinturault by 14. Kilde is 55 points back in third.

A downhill on the same hill is scheduled for Saturday, as Italy is hosting five World Cup races in as many days, with technical events in Alta Badia and Madonna di Campiglio to follow until Tuesday.

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