Ted Ligety, showing no ill effects from last year’s season-end downhill training injury, finished second in the World Cup season-opening GS at Solden, Austria, on Sunday. It’s Ligety’s third straight year finishing on the podium in that event. This year he shared it with two Swiss racers, winner Didier Cuche, who finished a comfortable .60 seconds ahead of Ligety, and Carlo Janka, who was .95 seconds off Cuche’s pace. Four other Americans raced but failed to make the Top 30 to qualify for the second run, including Tim Jitloff, Tommy Ford, Jake Zamansky and Warner Nickerson. Bode Miller, recently reunited with the U.S. Team, did not compete in the season opener.
In Saturday’s women’s race, Finland’s Tanja Poutiainen edged local favorite Kathrin Zettel of Austria by just .01 seconds. First-run winner Denise Karbon of Italy finished third, .32 seconds out. American Lindsey Vonn, the reigning overall champ, remains winless in her career in GS, the only discipline she hasn’t conquered, finishing ninth, 1.39 out, after a mediocre first run. The women’s race was marred by the injury of Austrian star Nicole Hosp, who crashed during the first run on the Rettenbach Glacier. Hosp, the 2007 overall winner, who missed most of last season due to injury, suffered torn knee ligaments and was taken from the course by helicopter.