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Winter Olympics: Downhill winner Mayer emulates idols to better father

Published on Feb 9, 2014 4:45 PM

ROSA KHUTOR, Russia (AFP) - Risk-taking Austrian tyro Matthias Mayer overcame a poor upper section to storm to Olympic gold in the blue riband Winter Games event of the men's downhill on Sunday.

The 23-year-old, whose favourite discipline is the shorter speed event, the super-G, clocked 2min 06.23sec down the 3.5km-long course for the first Austrian downhill gold since Fritz Stroebl in the 2002 Games in Salt Lake City.

Mayer, who has never won a major international downhill, also bettered his father Helmut's silver-medal showing in the super-G at the Calgary Games in 1998.

In a gripping morning's racing when the lead changed hands five times until Mayer came bombing down the slope with bib No.11, Italian Christof Innerhofer took silver at just six-hundredths of a second back.

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