Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy
Lara Gut-Behrami set out her credentials for a speed double at the world championships by topping the final training before the women’s downhill on Saturday.
The Swiss racer will be hoping to take advantage of the absence of home favourite and Olympic champion Sofia Goggia, winner of the last four World Cup downhills before sustaining a season-ending injury.
“It will certainly be a close race, you can’t make any mistakes,” Gut-Behrami said. “The snow is also not easy to ski, you have to ski a tight line.” Gut-Behrami finally bagged a world gold when she stormed to victory in Thursday’s super-G, but insisted that topping podiums was not a life-changing event for her.
“If someone would have asked me if I would have preferred 30 wins in the World Cup or a (world championship) gold medal, I would have said 30 wins,” she said.
“With time I realised that in life there are so many things that are more important than a gold medal.
“So this made it easier to ski (the super-G) and just try to do what I can and not think too much.” A bronze medal winner in the downhill in the 2015 worlds behind Tina Maze and Anna Veith, both now retired, the 29-year-old Gut-Behrami also claimed silver as a teenager behind Lindsey Vonn way back at the 2009 worlds in Val d’Isere.—AFP