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Montillet Wins Downhill; Kildow third


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CORTINA D’AMPEZZO, Italy, Jan. 18, 2004 (AP by Andrew Kampf) — Carole Montillet of France won another World Cup downhill, and Lindsey Kildow of the United States finished third Sunday for the best result of her career.

Montillet, the Olympic downhill champion, finished in 1 minute, 16.27 seconds for her third downhill victory this season.

Austria’s Renate Goetschl, who won a super giant slalom Friday, was 0.23 seconds behind and increased her overall standings lead. Sweden’s Anja Paerson, who entered the day one point behind Goetschl, finished 21st.

Kildow was 0.24 seconds behind, and teammate Kirsten Clark finished fifth.

“I can’t even explain how happy I am,” the 19-year-old Kildow said after wiping away a few tears. “I called my dad. He was watching on the Internet and he was crying, too.”

Kildow is confident she can do well if she is skiing her best.

“In training, I’m always faster than all those other girls,” she said. “I knew I could do it. It’s just a matter of doing it in the race. I’m just starting to figure it out.”

Goetschl was impressed by Kildow’s performance, which followed a sixth-place finish in Saturday’s downhill.

“She’s so young, I hope I quit before she gets any better,” Goetschl said.

Kildow’s role model growing up was Picabo Street.

“When I was like 10, she had an autograph signing at this little ski shack where I bought all my skies and I just thought she was the greatest,” Kildow said. “Then her last year on the team I was with her. She’s so motivating and helpful and she was always there for me.”

While Street’s accomplishments will always be remembered by the U.S. team, the Americans are ready for some new skiers to make an impact.

“You have to move on,” U.S. coach Patrick Riml said. “That was then and now we have to look forward to the future.”

Montillet added Sunday’s victory to wins in the first two downhills of the season in Lake Louise, Canada. She then struggled, but regained her form with three straight top-5 finishes earlier in the week in two super-G’s and Saturday’s downhill, in which she was third.

“This week, when I arrived I wanted to be on the podium and this morning I said I already have a good week in Cortina, and I would be happy when I go home,” Montillet said. “When you know you can win and you’re skiing well, it’s much easier.”

Hilde Gerg of Germany was fourth after winning Saturday’s downhill. Chimene Alcott was ninth, the best downhill result by a British woman in the World Cup era.

Copyright © 2000 The Associated Press