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WINTER

German pushes for giant slalom title

German skier Viktoria Rebensburg took another step towards the World Cup giant slalom title Sunday after dominating the first leg of the final women's race of the season.

German pushes for giant slalom title
Photo: DPA

But according to a long feature in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the US skier Lindsey Vonn will be touch to catch. Vonn is skiing the season of her life and is taking the future into her own hands after separating from her husband and coach Thomas Vonn last year, the paper wrote.

The newspaper quoted trainers and coaches of Vonn’s saying the US skier is completely obsessed with winning and is constantly thinking of her next competition.

“That’s what makes her so strong,” Alex Hödlmoser, the chief US women’s ski trainer told the newspaper. Hödlmoser is a former ski racer and trainer of the Austrian team.

The German, who has a 95-point lead on Vonn, her closest competitor, topped the first leg in 1min 15.29sec.

Austria’s Anna Fenninger came second in 1:15.72, with Italy’s Federica Brignone third in 1:16.17.

Overall World Cup winner Vonn, who is hoping to break Hermann Maier’s record tally of 2,000 points achieved in one season, finished 16th.

Currently standing at 1,980 points, Vonn needs to finish at least 13th after the second leg to top the Austrian’s record.

On Saturday, Vonn – who has taken the overall, super-G, downhill and super-combined World Cup trophies this year – broke the women’s record of 1,970 points in one season established by retired Croatia’s Janica Kostelic.

AFP/mw

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ACCIDENT

German tourists among 13 dead in Italy cable car accident

Thirteen people, including German tourists, have been killed after a cable car disconnected and fell near the summit of the Mottarone mountain near Lake Maggiore in northern Italy.

German tourists among 13 dead in Italy cable car accident
The local emergency services published this photograph of the wreckage. Photo: Vigili del Fuoco

The accident was announced by Italy’s national fire and rescue service, Vigili del Fuoco, at 13.50 on Sunday, with the agency saying over Twitter that a helicopter from the nearby town of Varese was on the scene. 

Italy’s National Alpine and Speleological Rescue Corps confirmed that there were 13 victims and two seriously injured people.

Italian daily Corriere della Sera reported that German tourists were among the 13 victims.

According to their report, there were 15 passengers inside the car — which can hold 35 people — at the time a cable snapped, sending it tumbling into the forest below. Two seriously injured children, aged nine and five, were airlifted to hospital in Turin. 

The cable car takes tourists and locals from Stresa, a resort town on Lake Maggiore up to a panoramic peak on the Mottarone mountain, reaching some 1,500m above sea level. 

According to the newspaper, the car had been on its way from the lake to the mountain when the accident happened, with rescue operations complicated by the remote forest location where the car landed. 

The cable car had reopened on April 24th after the end of the second lockdown, and had undergone extensive renovations and refurbishments in 2016, which involved the cable undergoing magnetic particle inspection (MPI) to search for any defects. 

Prime Minister Mario Draghi said on Twitter that he expressed his “condolences to the families of the victims, with special thoughts for the seriously injured children and their families”.

Infrastructure Minister Enrico Giovannini told Italy’s Tg1 a commission of inquiry would be established, according to Corriere della Sera: “Our thoughts go out to those involved. The Ministry has initiated procedures to set up a commission and initiate checks on the controls carried out on the infrastructure.”

“Tomorrow morning I will be in Stresa on Lake Maggiore to meet the prefect and other authorities to decide what to do,” he said.

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