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Super-G gold for Norway's Aksel Lund Svindal

Stunning Svindal seals Super G gold

Stunning Svindal seals Super G gold

Aksel Lund Svindal won Norway's fourth gold of the Winter Olympics and his second medal in Vancouver after a near-perfect run in the men's Super-G.

The 27-year-old, who won silver in the men's downhill on Monday, completed the icy course in one minute 30.34 seconds.

Silver medallist Bode Miller, 0.28 sec behind, became the only American to win four Alpine Olympic medals, while compatriot Andrew Weibrecht was third.

Britain's Ed Drake trailed by 2.86 sec to finish in 32nd place.

The tough, bumpy 2.08km track proved troublesome for many, with 40-year-old Swede Patrik Jaerbyn involved in a particularly bad crash when his ski caught the inside of a gate.

Svindal, however, had little problems and continued Norway's dominance in an event they have now won four golds since Super-G's Olympic debut in Calgary back in 1988.

It was a deserved gold for the 2009 Super-G World Cup winner.

Norway's Aksel Lund Svindal
Svindal won the Super-G World Cup title in 2009

"It's been a lot of work getting to where I need to be for winning races," said Svindal, who was sidelined with a knee injury in October and then contracted flu at the end of 2009.

"It was good but it's hard to talk about perfect. I prepared well. I'm in top form and am just enjoying it.

"I knew I was going to take risks. At the start I thought, 'put a smile on your face, you already have a silver. Go for the gold and see what happens.'"

Svindal trailed showman Miller by 0.30 sec at the first checkpoint but made up time to lead by 0.02 sec at halfway and extended the advantage along the bottom half of the course.

Miller, 32, and 24-year-old Weibrecht became the first American men to win medals in the same Alpine event since brothers Phil and Steve Mahre in the slalom at Sarajevo in 1984.

"I haven't ever come down leading a race," said Weibrecht, who started third and had never finished better than 10th in a World Cup race.

"I figured I would stay in there until 10 guys came down. But I kept staying in there."

Jaerbyn was brought down the course by toboggan and taken to a hospital, but Swedish team doctor Per Liljeholm said his condition was thought to be stable.

"It seems that he has a mild concussion and some amnesia from the fall, but there's no signs of injury to the spine," said Liljeholm.

It was another bad day on the slopes for Austria, who failed to get any of their four starters in the top 10 after failing to get a medal in the men's downhill.

Downhill gold medallist Didier Defago of Switzerland was 1.09 sec slower in 15th, while the best his compatriots could do was an eighth-place finish from Carlo Janka, 0.49 sec behind.

GB's Drake admitted it was not his best performance but hoped the experience would stand him in good stead in four years time.

"I didn't ski as well as I hoped to or wanted to, but I had some good turns in there. It's just a case of stringing them all together," said Drake??"It's no secret that these Games are not really where I'm looking to peak - it's definitely a springboard to the next Olympic Winter Games so I don't go there totally in awe of the occasion."

Ed Drake

Brit Drake shows promise in Super G final

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see also
Defago powers to downhill glory
15 Feb 10 |  Alpine skiing
Svindal crowned super-G champion
12 Mar 09 |  Winter Sports

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