Silver lining for Kildow
Miller comes up empty in first event at worlds
ARE, Sweden -- Lindsey Kildow whooshed a long sigh of relief after earning her first major championship medal. Bode Miller shrugged after finishing 24th and losing his super-G title, then fled the scene.
After a bad crash at the Olympics and a series of fourth-place finishes at the last worlds, Kildow finally had a silver medal looped around her neck yesterday after finishing second to home favorite Anja Paerson in the women's super-giant slalom at the Alpine Skiing World Championship.
Miller, the defending champion, made a series of mistakes and finished 1 1/2 seconds behind the winner in the men's super-G as the world championships finally opened after three days of weather postponements.
Paerson, winless on the World Cup circuit this season after undergoing knee surgery last spring, won the women's race in 1 minute 18.85 seconds. Kildow was second in 1:19.17. Renate Goetschl of Austria, who has won three of the five super-G races this season, earned bronze in 1:19.38.
Though she's a seven-time winner on the World Cup circuit, Kildow never had won a medal at a big event.
"I definitely feel like the monkey's off my back now. I've proven a lot today," the 22-year-old Kildow said. "I feel like I've been pretty unlucky. In the Olympics last year it was pretty tough with the crash. It kind of ruined my whole Games. And I was fourth three times in Bormio [at the 2005 worlds]. So it's a relief and satisfaction to be second."
The American skier was hospitalized overnight after a horrific crash in downhill training at the Turin Games last year. She came back and competed in all four of her events -- downhill, combined, super-G, and slalom -- but her best result was seventh in the super-G.
Two other American women joined Kildow in the top 10 -- Olympic giant slalom champion Julia Mancuso was sixth and Libby Ludlow was ninth.
In the men's race, Italian Patrick Staudacher benefited from an early start number to cover the Olympia course in 1:14.30. Austrian Fritz Strobl took silver in 1:14.62. Switzerland's Bruno Kernen was third in 1:14.92.
Miller took a lot of risks on the upper section, then lost almost half a second when he hit a gate with his shoulder on the bottom part of the course.
"That's how skiing goes. I risked it all and I lost," Miller said.
Steven Nyman was 12th for the top US men's result.