Innerhofer, Ruiz Castillo Win World Cup Skiing Downhill Races

Spain’s Carolina Ruiz Castillo won the women’s downhill in France for her first World Cup skiing title, as Italy’s Christof Innerhofer captured the men’s race in Germany.

Ruiz Castillo had a time of 1:42.56 in Meribel today to beat Germany’s Maria Hoefl-Riesch by 0.20 seconds. France’s Marie Marchand-Arvier was another 0.01 second back in third.

It was only the second top-3 career finish for Ruiz Castillo and comes 13 years after she was runner-up in a giant slalom in Italy.

“I have to say that nothing has suddenly changed in my life to make me win today,” the 31-year-old said on the World Cup website. “This is the result of a lot of work.”

Slovenia’s Tina Maze leads the overall World Cup standings by 858 points over Hoefl-Riesch after finishing fourth today.

Maze also moved within 101 points of American Lindsey Vonn, who will miss the rest of the season after tearing two knee ligaments and fracturing her right leg in a crash at the world championships earlier this month, in the downhill standings.

Innerhofer, 28, finished in 1 minute, 37.83 seconds on the Kandahar course in Garmisch-Partenkirchen for his third victory of the season. Austria’s George Streitberger was next, 0.12 second behind, with countryman Klaus Kroel a further 0.04 seconds back in third.

World champion Aksel Svindal Lund of Norway finished in fifth to move ahead of Italy’s Dominik Paris, who was eighth, at the top of the downhill standings, with Innerhofer third.

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