Originally written on Fox Olympics  |  Last updated 10/12/14
Sports_news_511a
With Lindsey Vonn injured and Bode Miller already out for the season, it's Ted Ligety's turn to lead the US ski team. A day after Vonn's season-ending crash at the world championships, Ligety showed off his rapidly improving speed skills to win the first super-G of his career in the marquee event of the season. The timing was not lost on the Park City, Utah, native. "It's definitely (tough) losing those teammates that have been so good over so many years and really carried the flag of the U.S.," Ligety said. "It's tough losing them, for sure, but it's an individual sport, too. You're out there competing for yourself." Building on his giant slalom skills, Ligety surprised even himself Wednesday. In front of a crowd of 24,000, he took a lot of risks in the turning final section and mastered the Planai course in 1 minute, 23.96 seconds. Gauthier De Tessieres of France was 0.20 back in second in another stunning result, and Aksel Lund Svindal of Norway, who won three of the four World Cup super-Gs this season, was another 0.02 back in third. Defending champion Christof Innerhofer of Italy finished 1.09 off the pace in seventh. "Today was unbelievable," said Ligety, who was the 10th starter. "It was a nerve-racking 30 minutes, waiting for all the favorites to come down. (To) finally see (Svindal) come down right behind me was a huge weight off my shoulders." Ligety made a super-G podium only once before, finishing second in a World Cup at Val d'Isere, France, in 2009. This season, he's finished fourth in two races. "I am having a good year in super-G but I didn't think this was possible," he said. "I thought I had a chance for a medal. ... I knew I had to take many risks at the bottom to have a chance. I tried not to slide and to ski as clean as possible." Ligety became the third American to win the world super-G title in the past 12 years after Daron Rahlves in St. Anton, Austria, in 2001 and Miller in Bormio, Italy, four years later. The gold is Ligety's second worlds medal, two years after winning the giant slalom in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. It's also the second medal for the U.S. team this week, a day after Julia Mancuso placed third in the women's super-G. Vonn's season ended when she tore ligaments in her knee and broke a bone in her leg in a crash Tuesday, but Ligety said that wasn't on his mind. "It's very sad for Lindsey because she was doing great, but it didn't matter for my race," he said. "You have to move on. I am sure she will be back next year. As a ski racer, you can't let that affect you too much." The course set with many turns suited Ligety's style of skiing. He usually arches long turns better than most of the speed specialists. "He has been just charging and skiing clean as in GS, with the confidence to take it down the hill at super-G speed." U.S. men's coach Sasha Rearick said. "He was able to hang tight with the best gliders on the top and took some time on them on the bottom," Rearick said. Ligety trailed De Tessieres by 0.41 at the first intermediate time, 30 seconds into his run. He reduced the deficit to 0.06 over the next 30 seconds and beat the Frenchman in the bottom section. De Tessieres, whose best super-G result on the circuit was eighth, had not qualified for the French team, but replaced Johan Clarey, who pulled out with a back injury Sunday. "It's difficult to describe this week," De Tessieres said. "I hadn't qualified and got a phone call from the coach a couple of days ago and now I am here. I am so happy. It's amazing, a crazy story." Several favorites led Ligety at the first split, including Austria's Matthias Mayer, Italy's Matteo Marsaglia and Innerhofer, and Svindal. The course was set by Norway coach Tron Moger, who also placed the gates when Svindal won the super-G in Val Gardena, Italy, in December. "I took a lot of risks and had a small mistake at the end," Svindal said. "The conditions were OK, but not ideal. With this (low) light, you don't see the bumps. I am satisfied. Ted did just great." The world championships continue with the women's super-combined Friday.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Mike Pettine considered benching Hoyer for Manziel

Percy Harvin speaks out: 'I'm not a perfect person'

Report: Kobe has prevented Lakers from signing top talent

Red Sox may be ready to move Yoenis Cespedes

Alleged details of War Machine's suicide letter released

Austin Davis says Rams security didn't recognize him

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

LeBron: Bulls are 'much better' than Cavs right now

Redskins to stick with Colt McCoy over Kirk Cousins

Rick Pitino: Louisville will beat FSU in football

Report: Rams considered favorites to move to LA

Kobe to Julius Randle: You’re an idiot if you (expletive) this up

Slava Voynov arrested on D.V. charge, suspended indefinitely

WATCH: Boxer viciously attacks referee at Euro Championships

WATCH: Salvador Perez hassles Lorenzo Cain at media session

Lane Kiffin trashed in Tennessee political ad

WATCH: Lawrence Timmons throws up on field during MNF

10 NBA players who could be traded by the All-Star break

WATCH: Jimbo Fisher gets annoyed, cuts interview short

WATCH: Les Miles has classic reaction to dumb question

WATCH: Tennessee coach tried to trip Ole Miss player?

News station congratulates Gary Payton for breaking TD record

Did Sidney Crosby troll Flyers fans with Halloween costume?

Why Dan Mullen is not leaving Mississippi State

12 amazing stats from Week 7

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Lane Kiffin trashed in political ad

Details of War Machine's suicide letter leaked

Angry Jimbo Fisher cuts off interview

Is Kobe's deal hurting the Lakers?

Tenn. coach tried to trip Ole Miss CB?

GGG continues his reign of terror

The 6 things that mattered this weekend in the premier league

News station congratulates Gary Payton for TD record

Ray Rice could be back by Week 10?

12 amazing stats from Week 7

World Series preview

Favre: I got calls about playing last season

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.