Ilka Štuhec edges Sofia Goggia for World Cup Finals downhill win

Ilka Štuhec completed her downhill season Wednesday by edging Sofia Goggia for victory at the World Cup Finals.

Mikaela Shiffrin sits out race, expected to return for Thursday's super-G

A skier smiles for the camera.
Slovenia's Ilka Stuhec smiles in the finish area after winning the women's downhill at the World Cup Finals on Wednesday in Soldeu, Andorra. (Alessandro Trovati/The Associated Press)

One year after almost quitting Alpine skiing in frustration, Ilka Štuhec was back at the peak of her form on Wednesday.

The two-time world champion completed her downhill season by beating Sofia Goggia, the season's standout speed racer, for victory at the World Cup Finals.

Štuhec raced down the sun-bathed slope to finish 0.51 seconds ahead of Goggia, a five-time downhill winner this season who already secured the discipline title. Lara Gut-Behrami was third, 0.81 seconds back.

Štuhec added a second victory in an impressive season when she was also runner-up at two of Goggia's victories. They were the 32-year-old Slovenian skier's first podium finishes since retaining her world championship title in downhill in February 2019 in Are, Sweden.

"It means really a lot actually because this time last year I was thinking, should I continue? Should I quit? What should I do with my life?" Štuhec said. "Then I listened to my guts and I was like OK, I will change things and I will go on because I still had a feeling I could do it — and now everyone knows."

Her past three seasons were affected by injuries and last April she split with the coach she worked with since 2019.

"It makes it fun again," Štuhec said of her 11th career World Cup race win. "I am really enjoying it and I will definitely go on."

WATCH | Full coverage of the downhill:

FIS Alpine World Cup Soldeu: Women’s downhill

18 days ago
Duration 1:27:40
Watch the women's World Cup downhill race from Soldeu, Andorra.

Goggia's season-long downhill title was the fourth in the past five seasons for the 2018 Olympic champion from Italy.

Elena Curtoni, one of only four racers to win a World Cup downhill this season, crashed Wednesday, as did Nina Ortlieb. They did not appear to be seriously injured.

No Canadians competed in the race.

Mikaela Shiffrin, the overall World Cup champion who won her record 87th career victory last weekend, did not compete in the downhill. She should return for the super-G on Thursday, which begins live at 4:50 a.m. ET on, the CBC Sports app and CBC Gem.

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