Mayer takes the plaudits for second training

Matthias Mayer on his way to winning the second training run for the Men's Downhill in Sochi - COPYRIGHT ZOOM AGENCE

Matthias Mayer posted the fastest time in the second training run for the Men’s Downhill in Sochi as the men got to grips with the course. … Carlo Janka took second ahead of joint third Aksel Lund Svindal and Klaus Kroell.

Aksel Lund Svindal said the jumps were huge and the impact on landing was violent! According to Canadian legend and NBC commentator, Todd Brooker, What does he plan on doing about it? Go even faster! After talking to Bode Miller, sixth today, Brooker said “Bode Miller discussed his second training run for the DH. He was fast again out of the start, but laughed about a mistake lower down. Says he feels great and he is going to the opening ceremonies tonight.”

Ex British Olympian and out doing the commentary for the BBC, Emma Carrick Anderson explained the two courses after inspecting them this morning as: “Holy smokes! Just back from the inspections of both mens and womens DH. Wow, the mens is unbelievable. Even Graham (Bell) who did the film run said it was BRUTAL, bumpy, unbelievably icy and soooo steep. This is one serious DH and Bode Miller loves it! The womens is great too but not quite as iced up. Although not quite as dramatic, there are still some amazing parts with awesome names like Launch pad and Devils spine.”

The training runs for the Austrian team are almost as important as the race. With six runners allowed in the training runs but only four in the race, pressure was on the Austrians to make the team. The second training run was deemed to be the qualification race for the team and with Mayer and Max Franz having already secured their spots Kroell, Otmar Striedinger, Joachim Puchner and Georg Streitberger had to fight it out for the remaining two spots. The rules were simple: Fastest in training got to race! Kroell, who has not had the best of seasons secured his spot with third place with Svindal and Streitberger placed 12th, one spot and six hundredths ahead of Otmar Striedinger. Franz placed seventh. Striedinger and Puchner will sit out the Men’s downhill now.

Defending Olympic Champion Didier Defago placed ninth just behind Kjetil Jansrud.

For the American team Bode Miller, Travis Ganong and Marco Sullivan are all definites and the coaches now have to choose from Steve Nyman (18th in second training); Erik Fisher (23rd) and new rising star Jared Goldberg (22nd). This will be a tough call.

There is is one training run left before race day on Sunday.

Full men’s results from training run 2