James Crawford wins sensational Gold in World Championship Super-G
James Crawford left all the favourites standing in the World Championship Super-G in Courchevel on Thursday. The Canadian athlete bagged the Gold medal with a sensational run. Alexis Pinturault won his second medal at his home World Championship in third place. In the women's super-G on Wednesday, Cornelia Hütter and Kajsa Vickhoff Lie shared the Bronze medal.
"James Crawford has always performed well this season but has never brought that performance across the finish line. Everything fell into place today. After his fall in Wengen, we were worried whether he would be able to put that behind him so easily. But that is what he did. He realised that you have to take all the risks and that is what he focused on today," emphasised HEAD Racing Director Rainer Salzgeber. "Alexis Pinturault's second medal in the Championships is a brilliant result. He also saw that he has to take risks if he wants to compete for the podium. James may have let the skis run a bit more to the limit. Both of them feel comfortable with these skis and really put the heat on. It was awesome that they both managed to do that. On the women's run it was the final slope into the finish that was decisive. If she hadn't made a mistake there, Ragnhild Mowinckel could have won the race. For Kajsa Vickhoff Lie, it was a great result following her serious injury. Her service man Bernd Fetz has always believed in her. And she too. Cornelia Hütter has already proven that she can race to a podium finish. Overall, it was a close thing. But two Bronze medals are an excellent result."
"I just wanted to give it my best"
James Crawford caused the biggest sensation so far at the World Championships in Courchevel/Meribel. The Canadian athlete, who has yet to win a World Cup race, is the World Champion in the Super-G. In the World Cup, the 25-year-old has notched up two podium finishes so far, including second place in the Super-G in Kvitfjell 2022. At the 2022 Olympic Games in Beijing, he won the Bronze medal in the Combined event. "That is fantastic. I didn't expect anything from this World Championships, I just wanted to give it my best. I was very focused on skiing and pushed the limit from top to bottom. I couldn't believe it when it lit up green at the finish line. It was incredible," said the new World Champion.
Second World Championship medal for Alexis Pinturault
For Alexis Pinturault, things are also running like clockwork at his home World Championships. His Gold medal in the opening Combined event was followed by Bronze in the Super-G, the second event of the World Championships. Austrian athletes Vincent Kriechmayr in twelfth place and Stefan Babinsky 15th also finished in the top 15. "It was a really good run. I gave it everything. It was not an easy Super-G," explained Alexis Pinturault. "It was five percent faster than in the Combined. Everybody made a couple of mistakes. Everyone was at the limit, including me today. James Crawford has been very strong and consistent this season. He's still young, and he can still achieve a lot in the future."
Hütter and Vickhoff Lie share Bronze
The HEAD World Cup Rebels grabbed two Bronze medals in the women's Super-G on Wednesday. Cornelia Hütter from Austria and Kajsa Vickhoff Lie from Norway shared third place. For both athletes it was their first medal at a major event. "That's the kind of moment you work toward. I had a good feeling on the run, but when I saw I was first, I still thought it was too close. On some sections I could have been even more daring," said the Austrian athlete at the finish. "I'm happy to make it to the start line, and I am feeling good. That is what makes it enjoyable. Sharing third place with Kajsa is also cool. She has also had quite a tough few years. These are awesome ski racing results." Kajsa Vickhoff Lie is also happy with Bronze: "This is unbelievable, I am so happy. With my early bib number it was very difficult today, but I believed in myself. It's so great. I'm living my dream and I'm very proud."
Mowinckel and Gut-Behrami narrowly miss medals
The two HEAD athletes Ragnhild Mowinckel from Norway and Lara Gut-Behrami from Switzerland were in fifth and sixth place. Both missed the medals by just three and four hundredths of a second each. Finishing in the top 15 were also Laura Gauche from France in 14th place and Elena Curtoni from Italy who was 15th.