Journal De Bruxelles - Odermatt wins overall World Cup skiing title, Shiffrin on track

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Odermatt wins overall World Cup skiing title, Shiffrin on track
Odermatt wins overall World Cup skiing title, Shiffrin on track

Odermatt wins overall World Cup skiing title, Shiffrin on track

Marco Odermatt became the first Swiss man to win the overall World Cup alpine skiing title since 2010 on Wednesday, while Mikaela Shiffrin stretched her lead in the women's standings.

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Odermatt, 24, who won the Olympic men's giant slalom gold last month, clinched an overall title that was all but assured anyway when he finished second in the Courchevel downhill, 0.34sec behind Austria's Vincent Kriechmayr.

That gave the Swiss an unassailable 359-point lead over Norwegian rival Aleksander Aamodt Kilde with three races in other disciplines left this season.

Odermatt is the first Swiss man to win the overall title since Carlo Janka in 2010.

"It is a great feeling to get this big globe. It has been in the offing for a few weeks now, but now I am happy," Odermatt said.

"I hope this is just the start of something, not the end. I'm still young and I have a few years ahead of me."

Kilde, who is Shiffrin's boyfriend, won the overall downhill title by finishing fourth in Wednesday's race.

He broke the stranglehold of Beat Feuz, the newly crowed Olympic downhill champion from Switzerland who has won the title for the past four years.

"It's hard to describe the feeling after being the most nervous I've ever been in my life," Kilde said.

Shiffrin showed she is putting her disastrous Beijing Winter Olympics behind her as the American pulled off a surprise win in the women's downhill in Courchevel.

The 27-year-old failed to win a single medal in China, but she recorded the 74th World Cup victory of her career by finishing 0.10sec in front of Christine Scheyer of Austria and Joana Haehlen of Switzerland, who were tied for second.

Shiffrin has 1,345 points to second-placed Petra Vlhova's 1,189.

"I don't really feel like I am supposed to be winning downhills -- actually I feel like I am supposed not to be winning downhills," Shiffrin said after her surprise win.

"It worked out amazing today. I feel like I did a really good job."

Shiffrin credited Kilde with helping her to get a handle on the course in the French Alps.

"From the first training, he was saying 'Be smart'... I felt I could push and ski with good intentions. He's an amazing skier, so I love to watch him and I love to talk to him about it," she said.

In the same race, Italy's Sofia Goggia won the women's downhill title for the second consecutive season.

Goggia, who won the downhill silver medal at the Olympics, finished 12th, seven places ahead of Switzerland's Corinne Suter, the only skier who could have caught her.

D.Mertens--JdB