KITZBUEHEL, Austria – Right after posting the fastest time in a frenetic run at a men’s World Cup super-G on Friday, Kjetil Jansrud clicked out of his skis, held them both up in the air and loudly screamed.
The relief was huge for the 2014 Olympic champion from Norway about what would become his first victory in 14 months.
“I have not been doing very well so far this season as I worked a lot in downhill and didn’t get the results in super-G,” Jansrud said. “Now it’s back to where it should be.”
Jansrud’s 23rd career win and 13th in super-G came more than a year after his previous World Cup triumph in November 2018, though he did win the downhill title at the 2019 world championships in February.
Retired greats Lindsey Vonn and Aksel Lund Svindal were among the many well-wishers as the Hahnenkamm races traditionally gather the who’s who of Alpine skiing.
Racing in sunny conditions under blue skies, Jansrud led the field by more than a half second in a gutsy first half of his run. However, he had to overcome several mistakes on the rest of the Streifalm course before finishing 0.16 seconds ahead of his closest rivals.
Norwegian teammate Aleksander Aamodt Kilde and Matthias Mayer of Austria shared second place in what was already the fifth tie this season on a men’s World Cup podium.
“From top to bottom, it was a stable and OK run,” said Kilde, who got his first podium at the classic venue after finishing fourth and coming up short by two hundredths three years ago.
Wearing bib No. 19, Jansrud started after most of the favorites had completed their runs.
While waiting at the start, he had seen how Mayer, the 11th starter, took an initial lead before Kilde matched the Austrian’s time shortly afterward.
“I really cheered for Alex when he came through the finish. That moment I knew that a Norwegian would win the race,” said Jansrud, who got help from Kilde over the team radio just before he started.
“Alex is a good teammate, he gave me a good course report,” Jansrud said. “I feel a little bit sorry for Matthias. I saw his run as well and it was a really good one. He would have deserved to win as well.”
Mayer, who won the race three years ago, was on the podium for the fifth time. Only Svindal (six) and another retired standout, Hermann Maier (seven), had more top-three results at the Kitzbuehel super-G.
Mayer went to the top of the discipline standings with 264 points, 28 clear of a three-way tie for second place between Jansrud, Kilde and Vincent Kriechmayr of Austria, who finished the race in sixth.
Mauro Caviezel was 0.49 back in fourth and Swiss teammate Beat Feuz, who won the classic downhill in Wengen last weekend, trailed by 0.86 in seventh.
Travis Ganong was 1.15 behind in 10th for the American’s fourth top-10 result of the season.
Overall World Cup leader Henrik Kristoffersen skipped the race but remained on top of the overall standings, though the Norwegian had his lead slashed by Kilde to only 20 points.
Third-place Alexis Pinturault also scored useful points, finishing the race in ninth. The Frenchman trails Kristoffersen by 49 points.
The marquee event of the 80th Hahnenkamm races, the downhill on the Streif course, is scheduled for Saturday.