Italian clean sweep of the Bad Kleinkirchheim Downhill

BAD KLEINKIRCHHEIM, AUSTRIA - JANUARY 14: Sofia Goggia of Italy takes 1st place during the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women's Downhill on January 14, 2018 in Bad Kleinkirchheim, Austria. (Photo by Hans Bezard/Agence Zoom)

Sofia Goggia lead an Italian clean sweep of the podium in Bad Kleinkirchheim with Federica Brignone and Nadia Fanchini joining her on the podium. Tiffany Gauthier took fourth with Tina Weirather taking fifth. In a race that saw the start lowered down to try and beat the fog, a bumpy and tough ride was what greeted the racers.

This was Goggia’s third World Cup win of her career, her second Downhill win. After the race she explained “I’m happy about today’s result and I’m happy for the whole team. I am especially happy for Nadia after her hard time, the injuries, the illness of her sister. I told her: this victory is only for you!” Elina Fanchini has recently been diagnosed with a benign tumour but it has meant the end of her season.

BAD KLEINKIRCHHEIM, AUSTRIA – JANUARY 14: Sofia Goggia of Italy competes during the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women’s Downhill on January 14, 2018 in Bad Kleinkirchheim, Austria. (Photo by Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom)

After winning the Super G, this has been a great weekend for Federica Brignone and she replied: “I am really surprised, very happy. It was an advantage for me to have the start brought down. My chance is much bigger than usual. I never expected it. How we will celebrate, I do not know. But we have a tight schedule, we continue straight to training and then to Cortina.” Brignone has only down eleven World Cup downhills and this is the first time that she has been on the podium, let alone the top ten yet has seven World Cup wins to her name in Super G, Giant Slalom and Alpine Combined!

BAD KLEINKIRCHHEIM, AUSTRIA – JANUARY 14: Tiffany Gauthier of France competes during the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women’s Downhill on January 14, 2018 in Bad Kleinkirchheim, Austria. (Photo by Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom)

Fanchini has had a tough time with injuries and also the illness to her sister. “I am happy – also for the whole team. After the many injuries, it is difficult for me, I have only been back on skis for two months. I dedicate the result to my sister,” she explained.

BAD KLEINKIRCHHEIM, AUSTRIA – JANUARY 14: Nadia Fanchini of Italy competes during the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women’s Downhill on January 14, 2018 in Bad Kleinkirchheim, Austria. (Photo by Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom)

With Weirather taking fifth, Flury and Gisin sharing sixth, Anna Veith took eighth but the gap to the win was increasing dramatically. Goggia took the win by 1.10 seconds, Veith was two seconds off the pace.

Marta Bassino made it an even greater day for the Italians as she fought her way down to tenth from a bib of 45!

BAD KLEINKIRCHHEIM, AUSTRIA – JANUARY 14: Federica Brignone of Italy takes 2nd place, Sofia Goggia of Italy takes 1st place, Nadia Fanchini of Italy takes 3rd place during the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women’s Downhill on January 14, 2018 in Bad Kleinkirchheim, Austria. (Photo by Hans Bezard/Agence Zoom)

The standings in the Downhill Globe could not be that much tighter: Tina Weirather leads by one point from Goggia with Connie Huetter a further point back. Huetter was 14th in the race. With none of the top five in the race for the Overall racing, it is as you were in the race for the Overall with Mikaela Shiffrin leading Wendy Holdener and Petra Vlhova. Goggia moves up to sixth overall.

It is now on to Cortina for another speed weekend, if the weather gods will allow!

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