By PAT GRAHAM
AP Sports Writer
BEAVER CREEK, Colo. (AP) — Aleksander Aamodt Kilde of Norway captured a World Cup downhill race with an aggressive run Saturday for his second win in as many days.
It’s more proof the 2019-20 overall World Cup champion is returning to top form after tearing his ACL less than a year ago — and with the Winter Olympics in Beijing just two months away.
Starting 19th overall, Kilde finished the demanding Birds of Prey course in 1 minute, 39.63 seconds to edge Austrian racer Matthias Mayer by 0.66 seconds. Beat Feuz of Switzerland was third, while Italian racer Matteo Marsaglia turned in a surprise run from bib No. 28 to take fourth.
Kilde won the super-G Friday in just his third race back from a training crash last January in which he hurt his right knee. He said he received congratulations from his girlfriend and U.S. skiing star Mikaela Shiffrin, who’s competing in Lake Louise, Alberta, this weekend.
“She’s awesome,” Kilde said. “We’re good for each other.”
The 29-year-old Kilde dedicated the race Saturday to his good friend and teammate Kjetil Jansrud, the five-time Olympic medalist who crashed into the fencing during the super-G race Friday. Jansrud will return home to be evaluated after damage was detected to the cruciate ligament in his knee.
“Crossing my fingers for him to come back,” Kilde said. “Not ready to kind of ‘lose him’ already. We should just give him a hand and a big applause for everything he’s done.”
Feuz said he thought winning Friday “set something free” in Kilde, which carried over to Saturday.
“If you’re able to ski free, then all of the run comes together and he showed that in perfect fashion today,” Feuz added through a translator.
The top American finisher was Ryan Cochran-Siegle with a sixth-place finish and 1.24 seconds behind Kilde’s winning time.
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