Downhill second training in St. Anton cancelled

Austria Alpine Skiing World CupA view of the ski course’s finish area, where a training session for an alpine ski, women’s World Cup downhill race was canceled due to a snowfall in St. Anton, Austria, Friday, Jan. 11, 2013. (AP Photo/Giovanni Auletta)

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St. Anton, Austria – Above is what the downhill course looked like this morning! — 35cm of fresh snow in the top section of the course and around 10 to 20 cm in the lower section forced the Jury and the organizers to call off Friday’s second downhill training. Twelve snowcats are currently sweeping the slope, and six of them use a specifically-designed cable winch system in the steepest parts of the course to avoid sliding out, but also in order not to alter the clean base of the course. The slip crews are also working hard to push the snow out in the “Eisfall” section, which is too steep for the machines to go.

The weather is supposed to improve as the day goes on. The new snow together with all this hard work will allow the ladies to race on a course that will be less bumpy and icy than for Thursday’s training. They will now enjoy a good day of powder skiing and feel again comfortable on their skis after surviving the challenging slope conditions of the first training.

Big favorite Lindsey Vonn won the only two ladies’ World Cup held in St. Anton so far this century, a downhill and a super-combined in December 2007. Let’s see Saturday if she has fully recharged her batteries during her break and if she can keep this winning streak going! But the girls are all hungry for victory. Another exciting race coming up!

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