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Janka wins World Cup super-combined title

Janka said he was focused on doing a clean run in Sunday's race

(Keystone)

Carlo Janka has earned this season's crystal globe in the men's World Cup super-combined discipline.

The title went to Janka after the final race of the season in Sestriere, Italy, on Sunday, won by Romed Baumann of Austria with a combined time of 2 minutes 25.73 seconds.

Julien Lizeroux of France was 0.32 back in second, while Janka and Christof Innerhofer of Italy shared third, at 0.68 behind Baumann.

Baumann's victory in the race was only his second career podium finish.

"I never really focused on winning a World Cup discipline but it's great to take a crystal globe home," the 22-year-old Janka said afterwards.

"I wasn't nervous before my slalom today, I just wanted to put in a clean run."

Janka overtook Swiss teammate Silvan Zurbriggen who led the discipline standings going into the race but finished 1.47 seconds back in tenth place.

Janka's final 242 points put him in the lead after the discipline's four World Cup events. Zurbriggen was next in line, just 11 points shy of the title.

Zurbriggen later explained that he had problems with poor visibility during his morning super-G race. "However that should not be an excuse. I was just too slow," he said.

"But I have to remind myself that a year ago I was fighting to make a comeback after a knee injury in Val Gardena. At the time I would not have even dreamed of second place here."

Recovery time

Janka earned three podium places during the 2008-2009 World Cup, including two victories in the super-combined and giant slalom. In the parallel Alpine Ski World Championships in Val d'Isère he took away a gold in the giant slalom and bronze in the downhill.

"I went home to Obersaxen to recover after the excitement of the World Championships in Val d'Isère. That break was very important for me," he noted.

"But I do have to admit that I was not feeling very competitive in this [super-combined] discipline."

The 22-year-old Janka showed some beginner's luck, having previously competed in just four super-combined races before the start of this season, and finished just one.

The crystal globe has been awarded in the discipline for the past two years, with the previous winners Aksel Lund Svindal and Bode Miller.

The men's World Cup circuit continues with a giant slalom and a slalom in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia on February 28.

swissinfo with agencies

World Cup super-combined final standings

1. Carlo Janka (Switzerland) - 242 points
2. Silvan Zurbriggen (Switzerland) - 231
3. Romed Baumann (Austria) - 169
4. Ivica Kostelic (Croatia) - 166
5. Benjamin Raich (Austria) - 165
6. Jean-Baptiste Grange (France) - 154
7. Julien Lizeroux (France) - 139
8. Peter Fill (Italy) - 126
9. Natko Zrncic-Dim (Croatia) - 112
10. Marcel Hirscher (Austria) - 105

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Sestriere super-combined race results

1. Romed Baumann (Austria)
2. Julien Lizeroux (France)
3. Carlo Janka (Switzerland) and Christof Innerhofer (Austria)
10. Silvan Zurbriggen (Switzerland)
12. Sandro Viletta (Switzerland)
14. Didier Cuche (Switzerland)
17. Didier Défago (Switzerland)
28. Patrick Kueng (Switzerland)

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Bob triumph

Ivo Rüegg and brakeman Cedric Grand of Switzerland won the two-man competition at the bobsled world championships in Lake Placid in the United States on Sunday.

Rüegg finished the four-heat race at Mount Van Hoevenberg in 3 minutes, 42.20 seconds Sunday to beat Germany's Thomas Florschuetz and Marc Kuehne by 0.22 seconds.

Steven Holcomb and Curtis Tomasevicz of the United States won the bronze, finishing 0.40 seconds behind Rüegg.

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