American Bode Miller has won this year's prestigious Lauberhorn downhill race in the Swiss Alps ahead of Switzerland's Didier Cuche.This content was published on January 13, 2007 - 14:20
It was the fourth win for Miller and the fourth second place for Cuche in a World Cup event this season.
Teammate Ambrosi Hoffmann came in fourth, 0.09 seconds behind Italy's Peter Fill. Bruno Kernen, the last Swiss to win the classic Lauberhorn downhill in 2003, also made it into the top 15.
Miller claimed his fourth World Cup victory of the winter on Saturday, tearing down the 4.5-kilometre course in two minutes 28.89 seconds. He finished an impressive 0.65 seconds ahead of second-placed Cuche.
"I really wanted to charge 100 per cent whether I won or not. There are only a few races where I come out with the intention of skiing all risk," Miller said.
Cuche was pleased with his result in front of his home fans.
"It's certainly the best of all my second-place finishes this year. Bode was just out of reach," he said.
Cuche's strong showing confirmed the recent upturn in the fortunes of Swiss skiers. Last weekend the men's team celebrated their first World Cup victory in nearly three years when outsider Marc Berthod won a slalom.
Austrian speed specialist Michael Walchhofer, bidding for a third successive win in the discipline, failed after nearly skiing off course within seconds of leaving the start hut.
The race in the resort of Wengen was marked by blue skies and icy slopes, which led to a series of spectacular falls.
An estimated 20,000 spectators attended the event at the foot of the Eiger mountain.
The unseasonably warm weather forced organisers to postpone a men's World Cup super-combination race in Wengen until Sunday. The planned slalom was cancelled.
At a women's downhill event in Altenmarkt-Zauchensee, Austria, on Saturday Switzerland's Dominique Gisin came second behind Austria's Renate Götschl. The 21-year-old Gisin was competing in only the sixth World Cup event of her career.
Three other Swiss skiers, Nadia Styger, Silviane Berthod and Fränzi Aufdenblatten, finished in the top ten in Altenmarkt.
It was the best result of the season for the Swiss women's team, and follows Martina Schild's third place in a World Cup Super-G event last month.
swissinfo with agencies
The 4,465-metre Lauberhorn classic is the oldest and longest downhill race on the Wold Cup circuit.
An estimated 20,000 spectators attended the races in the Bernese resort of Wengen.
Bruno Kernen is the last Swiss skier to have won the Lauberhorn downhill in 2003.
1. Bode Miller (US) 2'28''89
2. Didier Cuche (Swiss) +0.65
3. Peter Fill (Italy) +1.47
4. Ambrosi Hoffmann (Swiss) +1.56
5. Marco Büchel (Liechtenstein) +1.61
6. Klaus Kröll (Austria) +1.70
7. Christoph Gruber (Austria) +1.73
8. Akse Lund Svindal (Norway) +1.86
9. Hermann Maier (Austria) +2.06
10. Pierre-Emmanuel Dalcin (France) +2.12
14. Bruno Kernen (Swiss) +2.72
17. Beni Hofer (Swiss) +2.77
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