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Downhills cancelled in St Anton

Bad weather conditions in the Austrian resort of St Anton have forced the organisers of the alpine skiing world championships to cancel this weekend's downhill races.

An overnight storm left up to 30 centimetres of fresh snow on the pistes while wind speeds of 100 kilometres an hour were recorded on the upper part of the men's downhill track.

The organisers said that it was not even possible to operate the ski-lift, let alone run a race.

It's now hoped that both the men's and the women's downhill races can be held on Tuesday, a day deliberately set aside to allow for rescheduled events.

Some 40,000 spectators were expected in St Anton for the weekend's programme. Thousands had already arrived before the cancellation was announced.

by Mark Ledsom

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