Maze receives death threat
GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, Germany – World Cup-winning skier Tina Maze was placed under police protection for a super-G race on Sunday after an emailed death threat against her.
The Slovenian finished fourth and had two bodyguards close by after the race, which was won by Anna Fenninger of Austria.
The threat came in an email received Saturday afternoon after Maze won the downhill on the same slope and become the first skier to collect more than 2,000 points in a season.
“If somebody is strong and showing good performances and perfect in the thing you are doing, there are people who want to disturb you,” Maze said. “I guess it’s part of the game but it didn’t disturb me that much.
“It shouldn’t be part of the game but life is not perfect. It’s not nice for me, it’s not nice for my team. I haven’t seen the email. … They want to ruin your day, ruin the record, but I enjoyed the day 100 percent.”
Peter Fischer, chief of the organizing committee, said the email came from an anonymous source and was immediately turned over to the police.
“We had to take it seriously, our job is to keep everyone safe here,” Fischer said. “Police took over the case and provided protection.”
Maze said she had never felt safer in her life, adding “I’ve had police in front of my door all the time since yesterday.”
Fenninger beat hometown favorite Maria Hoefl-Riesch by 0.20 of a second on the Kandahar course for her third career victory and second of the season.
American Julia Mancuso was third. She and Maze are still in competition for the season super-G title, which will now be decided at the World Cup finals in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, in two weeks.
Maze is already assured of the overall title and passed 2,000 points by winning the downhill. She now has 2,074 points. Mancuso said she lost Sunday’s race in the middle section of the course.
“I was not good in the turning section, I don’t know what it is, maybe a question of confidence,” said the American, who was second in Friday’s super-G on the same slope.
“I am happy to be on the podium, just trying my best every day. I am enjoying it with the sun out. I wish I could have gained some more points on her.”
Maze leads Mancuso 420-365 in the super-G standings with a maximum of 100 points up for grabs in the final race.
Like Mancuso, Maze also said she had problems with the jump in the middle section.
“It was pretty difficult to find the right line, I didn’t do my best but fourth is fine,” Maze said.
Maze won the gold medal in the super-G at the world championships last month in Schladming, Austria, while Mancuso took bronze.
Aksel Lund Svindal clinched the World Cup super-G title after winning his first race in Norway.
The Norwegian edged Austria’s Georg Streitberger by 0.52 seconds to win in 1 minute, 29.79 seconds in Kvitfjell, Norway. Werner Heel of Italy ended third, 0.57 seconds back.
The victory gives Svindal an unassailable 480 points, ahead of Italy’s Matteo Marsaglia on 249 and Matthias Mayer of Austria with 228.
In the overall standings, Svindal closed in on leader Marcel Hirscher with six races left. The Austrian has 1,215 points, while Svindal is second with 1,186.
Ted Ligety of the United States is third with 809.
American Brittany Bowe won a 1,000 meter speedskating world cup race in Erfurt, Germany, edging Ireen Wust of the Netherlands by 0.04 seconds.
Russia’s Olga Fatkulina was third, 0.45 behind Bowe’s time of 1 minute, 15.34 seconds to win the women’s 1,000 meter race.
Heather Richardson of the U.S. still leads the overall standings with 501 points, despite finishing 12th. Czech skater Karolina Erbanova is second with 429 and Bowe has 390.
Jan Smeekens neared the men’s overall title with a win in the 500, clocking 34.96 seconds to beat Japan’s Joji Kato by 0.09 seconds. Another Dutchman, Ronald Mulder, finished 0.32 seconds back to recreate Saturday’s podium placements.
Swiss reject bid
Voters in Switzerland have rejected a proposed bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympics at St. Moritz and Davos.
Bid organizers say the project is finished after residents in the Graubuenden state voted Sunday to oppose funding. Residents in both towns also held referendums Sunday, and “yes” votes were required in all three polls.
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