PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (Reuters) – The men’s downhill is a must-see at every Winter Olympics and often throws up surprises. Here is a short guide to this year’s version at the Jeongseon Alpine Centre:
WHEN IS IT?
Time - Thursday - GMT - Pm - ET
It’s now scheduled for 11.30 a.m. local time on Thursday (0230 GMT, 9.30 p.m. ET Wednesday), having been pushed back four days by windy conditions that have played havoc with the timing of the Alpine skiing program.
WHO ARE THE FAVORITES?
Austria - Matthias - Mayer - Champion - Form
Austria’s Matthias Mayer, the defending champion, is in good form but no one has ever won back-to-back golds in the men’s event.
Norway’s Kjetil Jansrud was the most consistent in training, while Beat Feuz of Switzerland is the world champion and leads the World Cup standings this season. In a Reuters interview, Austrian great Franz Klammer, the 1976 Olympic champion, tipped Feuz as the man to beat.
Italy - Dominik - Paris - Christof - Innerhofer
Italy’s Dominik Paris and Christof Innerhofer pose major threats too, and young German Thomas Dressen was fastest in the downhill run of the Alpine combined on Tuesday.
Norwegian Aksel Lund Svindal, silver medalist in 2010 and in with a big chance this time, told reporters “there’s 10 potential winners”.
COUNTRIES - USUALLY - DOMINATE
WHICH COUNTRIES USUALLY DOMINATE?
Just five nations have shared out the golds in the 18 downhill races since 1948. Austria leads with seven wins, with France on five, Switzerland three, the United States two and Italy on one. With Jansrud and Svindal, Norway could break into the club this time.
JEONGSEON - COURSE
HOW IS THE JEONGSEON COURSE...
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