Kilde edges Odermatt to clinch classic win in Wengen downhill 

The Norwegian conquered the Lauberhorn piste on Friday to claim his fifth World Cup victory of the season and top the downhill standings.

By Alessandro Poggi
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde continued his superb run of form in speed events this season by claiming the prestigious downhill World Cup race in Wengen, Switzerland, on Friday (14 January).

The 29-year-old has become the third Norwegian alpine skier to achieve the feat on the Lauberhorn track after Olympic gold medallists Lasse Kjus (1999) and Aksel Lund Svindal (2016) as he sealed his fifth win of the campaign, the second in downhill.

Following a second place in Thursday's Super G, this time Kilde had the best of Marco Odermatt by finishing 0.19 seconds ahead of the Swiss rising star and current overall World Cup leader.

"I tried to push full gas right from the start, it was great to ski down this slope. A Wengen win was always a goal for me, even if it wasn't from the very top start," Kilde told Austrian broadcaster ORF TV after the race. 

"The fight with Odermatt is really great. Let's see how it will be if there is still a minute more," said the Norwegian, who triumphed on a shorter course.

Reigning downhill World Cup champion Beat Feuz - who set the early marker - completed the podium, 0.30 seconds off the podium.

2021 world gold medallist Vincent Kriechmayr of Austria was controversially cleared to compete despite missing the official training runs and came in 12th place.

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde in action during the Alpine Ski World Cup Men's Downhill on January 14, 2022 in Wengen.
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

Under a sunny sky and with warm conditions, Kilde - who started with the big number 11 - produced a solid run in the first tricky half of the course and clocked the fastest times in the the last two sections as he recorded a speed close to the 150 km/h.

With this win, the Norwegian jumped to the top of the downhill World Cup standings with 269 points, followed by Matthias Mayer of Austria (today sixth) with 257.

Previous leader Dominik Paris dropped to third, one point behind Mayer, after settling for ninth today.

Odermatt keeps a comfortable lead in the overall rankings with 1025 points, 376 over second-placed Kilde.

Tomorrow (Saturday 15 January) Wengen will host the second downhill race in two days on the traditional longest course.

Men's Downhill in Wengen on 14 January 2022 - Results

1. Aleksander Aamodt Kilde (NOR) 1:42.42

2. Marco Odermatt (SUI) +0.19

3. Beat Feuz (SUI) +0.30

4. Daniel Hemetsberger (AUT) +0.46

5. Max Franz (AUT) +0.66

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