Bode Miller tempts fate with risky win at Beaver Creek
Saying he was nervous in the start "Because I knew the kind of risk I was about to take,” Bode Miller stuck to his game plan and attacked Beaver Creek's Bird of Prey course for his 33rd World Cup victory and third downhill win at Beaver Creek.
Miller was fast enough that he was really only challenged by two skiers, Swiss Beat Feuz finished a scant .04 back and Austrian Klaus Kroell who came within .14 of topping America's greatest male ski racer.
“There was nothing more I could do up there today,” said Miller. “I took as aggressive a line as I’ve ever skied here and it was almost error free.”
He said he was happy, satisfied and could only hope, when he skied in bib 12, that he had done enough to stay ahead of the pack. Fact is, he was way ahead of the pack, save for Feuz and Kroell, both of who skied after him. Never one to focus purely on victory but more interested in how well he skis, this race answered any questions he had about his preparation for the season.
“I’m really happy,” said Miller. “Sometimes it’s all about the win, sometimes it’s all about the skiing, this hill is a true test, I think. Technically I skied as well as I’ve ever skied so I’m really happy.”
If he hadn't skied that well, he said, he might well have ended up in hospital. “I’m not afraid to say it, it’s a miracle, the stuff I pulled off on the pitch, it doesn’t work all the time, it’s 2 or 3 out of 10 times, you try that and it works, the other 6 out of 10, you end up in the fence and one time you end up in the hospital.”
For the American crowd the U.S. win was enough to keep them pumped up and load, but beyond Miller the next best finish came from GS champion Ted Ligety in 22nd place. Ligety had skipped the final training run in favor of additional GS training while the remaining members of the speed team failed to score well. Marco Sullivan, with his usual large group of supporters here, posted 28th and Erik Fisher looked to be coming into form in 29th. Andrew Weibrecht and Travis Ganong missed scoring any points beyond the top 30.
The Canadians had Jan Hudec and Erik Guay, both struggling to return to their best form from injury, back to back in 16th and 17th.
Miller photos by GEPA
by Hank McKee
Men's World Cup Downhill, Beaver Creek, USA, Dec. 2, 2011
1 Miller, Head/Head/Head
2 Feuz, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
3 Kroell, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
4 Clarey, Head/Head/Head
5 Svindal, Head/Head/Head
6 Bertrand, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
7 Fill, Atomic/Atomic/Atomic
8 Streitberger, Fischer/Fischer/Fischer
9 Cuche, Head/Head/Head
10 Reichelt, Salomon/Salomon/Salomon
Men's World Cup Downhill, Beaver Creek, USA Dec. 2, 2011. ... It is the fourth race of the men's 45race 2011-12 World Cup season. ... the second of 11 scheduled downhills. ... It is the 42nd Cup race held at the site and the 16th downhill, all men's events. ... It is the first of six races to be held at Beaver Creek over the next seven days including two men's GS's, a super G and a slalom and a women's super G.
It is the 33rd career World Cup win for Bode Miller, his eighth in downhill and his third in DH at Beaver Creek, the last Dec. 1, 2006. ... It is his first DH sin since March 1, 2008 at Kvitfjell. ... It is the 226th American World Cup win. ... the 69th in DH. ... It is the third US win of the season by three different skiers.
It is the fourth career World Cup podium finish for Beat Feuz and second this season. ... All four have come since last March and all in downhill.
It is the 13th career World cup podium result for Klaus Kroell and first at Beaver Creek. ... He has been in the top five in three of the four men's races held this season.
It is the second best Cup result at Beaver Creek for Jan Hudec, the other a ninth score Dec. 3, 2007. ... Erik Guay matches his seventh best Beaver Creek result out 12 scoring finishes. ... It is the 96th best Cup scoring result for Ted Ligety. ... his third best of five downhill scores. ... Robbie Dixon matches his 27th best career result and places one slot better than his previous best of the season at Lake Louise last weekend. ... It is the sixth best Beaver Creek result for Marco Sullivan. ... third best in DH. ... It is his third score of the season. ... It is the third best of three scoring finishes at Beaver Creek for Erik Fisher.
Feuz leads the World Cup DH standings 160-129 over Cuche and Miller, tied in second. ... Hudec is the top Canadian in 13th place with 37pts. ... Miller moves to second on the overall standings 209-187 behind Didier Cuche (9th in race). ... Aksel Lund Svindal (5th in race) is third at 185pts. ... Hudec is top Canadian in tenth with 87pts. ... Austria leads the men's Nations Cup 719-562 over Switzerland. ... France is third with 490pt and the U.S. fourth with 339. ... Canada is seventh with 167pts.
|Rank||Bib||FIS Code||Name||Year||Nation||Total Time||FIS Points|
|5||8||421328||SVINDAL Aksel Lund||1982||NOR||1:44.78||12.30|
|Did not finish 1st run|