Miller Leads U.S. to 1-2 Finish in SG at World Cup Finals


March 16, 2006

ARE, Sweden (AP by Stephan Nasstrom)—Bode Miller led the United States to a 1-2 finish Thursday in the World Cup super-G finale, and Norway’s Aksel Lund Svindal clinched the discipline title with a third-place showing.

Miller, coming off a disappointing performance at the Turin Olympics, covered the Olympia course in 1 minute, 27.78 seconds for his first super-G win of the season and second podium finish at the World Cup finals. He was second in Wednesday’s downhill.

One of the early starters, Miller didn’t ski a perfect race, but it was enough.

“When I came down I was pretty sure someone would use the information I gave them on the course and ski a little bit cleaner,” Miller said. “Not necessarily that someone would outski me, but ski cleaner. The mistakes that I made amounted to more than a second.”

Daron Rahlves, who is retiring after this season, was .34 seconds behind Miller in the last speed event of his career.

It was the third time Miller and Rahlves finished 1-2 this season. They also made the double in the downhill and giant slalom events at Beaver Creek, Colo., in December.[pagebreak]

“The super-G is the toughest event because there’s only one inspection and the speeds are high,” Rahlves said. “It’s pretty special to be on the podium with Bode and finish the season strong.”

Svindal, who won the downhill, was third with a time of 1:28.31.

“Just looking at the super-G standings before today everyone knew it would be very tight,” Svindal said. “Basically, whoever finished the best of us top three would take the title.”

Austrian Hermann Maier needed to finish ahead of Svindal to clinch his sixth super-G title, but was .62 seconds off the pace as the last skier of the day.

Svindal topped the super-G standings with 284 points, two more than Maier. Rahlves was third with 269 points.

It was the 23-year-old Svindal’s first World Cup season title. He won his first race, a super-G, in November at Lake Louise, Canada.

Austria’s Benjamin Raich, who has already clinched the World Cup overall title, was one of five skiers who didn’t finish Thursday’s race. American Ted Ligety, who won gold in the Olympic combined event, also skied out.

Olympic champion Kjetil Andre Aamodt was eighth, 1.53 seconds behind Miller.

Copyright © 2006 The Associated Press