BEAVER CREEK, Colorado Dec. 3, 2004 (AP) –Bode Miller won his fourth World Cup ski race this season and Daron Rahlves was second Friday —the first 1-2 finish for the United States in the downhill.
“It’s about time,” Rahlves said. “It’s what we wanted —both of us on the podium.”
Miller and Rahlves started season saying each wanted to win the overall World Cup title. Miller, the World Cup leader, has won four of the five races so far and was second Thursday in the super-G won by Stephan Goergl of Austria.
“It’s far too early to think about the overall,” said Miller, trying to become the first American man since Phil Mahre in 1983 to win the overall title.
Miller finished in 1 minute, 39.76 seconds for the 16th win of his career. Rahlves was second in 1:39.92 and Michael Walchhofer of Austria was third in 1:40.15.
“I was flying,” Miller said. “I was rolling … I was doing things with instinct and reaction. A phenomenal feeling.”
When Rahlves came through the finish of the steep run, Miller and Bryon Friedman, who was seventh, stormed into the sunbathed finish area. All three hugged, waving a big American flag for the cheering crowd.
Rahlves, 17th in Thursday’s super-G, was happy with second.
“I wanted to be on the top step, but this is good,” said Rahlves, who then noted American Lindsey Kildow’s first women’s World Cup victory in Friday’s downhill at Lake Louise, Alberta. “People have to pay attention.”
It was the first time two Americans have won World Cup downhills on the same day since Picabo Street and Kyle Rasmussen won on March 11, 1995 —Street in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, en route to the first of two World Cup downhill titles, and Rasmussen in Kvitfjell, Norway.
The last time U.S. men went 1-2 in any World Cup-style race was 1984, when Phil Mahre won the Olympic slalom in Sarajevo with twin brother Steve taking the silver medal.
Defending World Cup champion Hermann Maier of Austria, who missed the 2002 Olympics after a motorcycle crash in which he broke his right leg, finished eighth.
Alpine team director Hans Pum said Maier had injured his right knee and was being examined by team doctors. It was not immediately known if Maier would race in Saturday’s giant slalom.
After Sunday’s slalom, the tour returns to Europe for the rest of the season.
Copyright © 2000 The Associated Press