One year ago Kjetil Jansrud was making a rather ignominious exit from the World Championships in Schladming: His season was over and … his leg was bearing the scars of a broken ACL. A year later he has completed a full set of Winter Olympic Medals in winning the 2014 Sochi Super G (he has already won a bronze in the Downhill).Â There are races and then there are The Olympic Games, and then there are records! Kjetil Jansrud produced the run of his life down the Rosa Khutor slope that culminated in him completing his full set of Olympic medals. Andrew Weibrecht went one better than almost his last Super G race, four years ago to grab the silver from bib 29 and to complete the race Bode Miller became the oldest Olympic medallist in sharing third with Jan Hudec.
Miller so wanted an Olympic medal this time around and at 36, the master of the comeback was on a mission. â€œThe intensity was good today,â€ he said. â€œThe intensityâ€™s been good all of these days, but the mistakes are whatâ€™s been offsetting that.Â Today, I came out and skied really aggressive, too aggressive for this hill. I made a mistake at the bottom; it was just stupid. Thereâ€™s nothing really to do after you come off the Lake Jump, you basically just get in your tuck and go to the finish. My mind was still looking for hundredths of a second, and I pushed too hard and probably cost myself half a second or six tenths. Thatâ€™s always tough, but to hang on for a medal today, I feel really lucky, very fortunate.â€
Miller had been the first to show his hand from bib 13. He had to wait until Jansrud came down at 21 for his time to be beaten. Miller had lead at all the splits but the race is all the way to the finish line and Jansrud was clean where Miller had made a mistake and Jansrud leapt into the lead by just over half a second.
The gold had been taken from Miller. Miller then had to share his position with Jan Hudec. Could the two of them hold on to share a medal? Hudec has a World Championship silver medal to his name and a couple of World Cup wins in Downhill. His best result in Super G on the World Cup has been a couple of second places but no medals at major events. This was the first medal for the Canadians in 20 years at the Olympics. Afterwards he saidÂ he was happy to share the bronze medal with Miller â€œas long as I donâ€™t just get half of a medal.â€
Hudec said that aÂ week ago in the downhill, â€œI was trying to ski carefully so I wouldnâ€™t injure my back. Today to be confident was just incredible.Â In the start I just felt so excited and so positive. I took a lot of risks and it worked. Two days ago I really felt I could do something in the super G, so I just went for it.â€
It looked good for the silver but when Andrew Weibrecht is on the start line, anything can happen. Miller had faith in the American who has spent most of the last four years recovering from injury. After the race he even admitted the day before was this what he wanted to do.
When you cross the line and see your name in the medals then all the hard work becomes worthwhile. After the race he said: â€œThis is probably the most emotional day of ski racing Iâ€™ve ever had,â€ adding, â€œItâ€™s just all the issues and troubles that Iâ€™ve had to come back from, and to be able to have a really strong result like this, it reminds me that all the work I did to come back from the injuries, just kind of dealing through all the hard times, thatâ€™s all worth it, it all makes sense.â€
Final word from Jansrud: “So far this Olympic Games has gone better than I had hoped. I am floating. It’s the biggest thing you can win,” said the 2014 Olympic super G champion.
What a race!
Olympic Champion: Kjetil Jansrud (NOR)
Silver Medal: Andrew Weibrecht (USA)
Bronze Medal: Bode Miller (USA) & Jan Hudec (CAN)
Picture credit: Copyright ZOOM AGENCEÂ