Weirather leads 1st DH training ahead of Schmidhofer, Vonn

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ALTENMARKT-ZAUCHENSEE, Austria (AP) — Tina Weirather of Liechtenstein posted the fastest time in the first training for a women's World Cup downhill on a shortened course on Thursday.

Weirather edged Nicole Schmidhofer of Austria by 0.06 seconds, and Lindsey Vonn of the United States by 0.10.

Overall World Cup leader Lara Gut, who leads Vonn by 158 points, was 0.46 behind in fourth.

Saturday's race will be the first women's downhill since 2002 to be contested over two runs. Organizers lowered the start because of insufficient snow conditions in the upper section, shortening the Kaelberloch course from its usual three kilometers to 1,875 meters and reducing the run times to just over a minute.

Back in Europe from spending a week at home in the United States, Vonn can match Austrian great Annemarie Moser-Proell's record of 36 downhill wins on Saturday. A year ago, the American broke Moser-Proell's best mark of 62 victories across all Alpine disciplines.

Vonn, who won back-to-back races in Lake Louise in December, is sharing the lead in this season's downhill standings with Fabienne Suter. The Swiss skier is out for an indefinite time after tearing a muscle above her left knee during giant slalom training Monday.

Both Vonn and Suter have 200 points, followed by Cornelia Huetter of Austria with 190. Huetter avoided injury while crashing in Thursday's training and finished more than 15 seconds off the lead.

The World Cup in Zauchensee also consists of a super-G on Sunday. The races have been moved from St. Anton because of a lack of snow.

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