Mayer wins super-G for speed gold double

The Sochi downhill champion matched Aksel Lund Svindal with a masterclass in turning at pace down the Jeongseon slope.

It was a second super-G medal for the Mayer family after Matthias's father Helmut won a silver in the inaugural running of the event at Calgary in 1988.   -  AFP

Matthias Mayer made up for the disappointment of his downhill title defence at the Pyeongchang Olympics by winning the men's super-G on Friday to end Norway's grip on the event and give Austria the gold medal for the first time in 20 years.

A day after Aksel Lund Svindal became the first man to have won golds in both the Olympic men's speed events, the Sochi downhill champion matched him with a masterclass in turning at pace down the Jeongseon slope.

Brushing aside the bumps and bruises he sustained when he collided with a TV cameraman during Tuesday's combined, Mayer carved his way down the mountain in one minute, 24.44 seconds in perfect conditions at the Jeongseon Alpine Centre.

It was a second super-G medal for the Mayer family after Matthias's father Helmut won a silver in the inaugural running of the event at Calgary in 1988 and brought the title back to Austria two decades after Hermann Maier's triumph in Nagano.

“Four years ago I won the downhill and now today I'm Olympic champion in super-G. I have no words for that,” said Mayer, who finished ninth in the downhill on Thursday.

“I had bib number 15 so I could watch five, six racers at the start and that was good for me so I could make my own line.”

Defending champion Kjetil Jansrud had hoped to give Norway a fifth successive gold but while his time of 1:24.62 gave him the early lead, it was ultimately only good enough for a bronze to add to his silver in the downhill.

Swiss Beat Feuz finished third behind Svindal and Jansrud in Thursday's downhill but produced a beautifully controlled run of 1:24.57 straight after Mayer to claim silver 0.13 seconds behind the Austrian.

“Unbelievable!” the downhill world champion said. “Yesterday bronze and today silver is really fantastic, I hadn't counted on that.”

Svindal was fifth in 1:24.93 behind French surprise package Blaise Giezendanner (1.24.82) after losing control and nearly fouling on the final gate but the 2010 champion refused to blame the quick turnaround from his downhill triumph.

“I chose to look at it as an advantage,” the 35-year-old said. “Of course you get less sleep because even though you try to go to bed at 10 o'clock, there's no way you can sleep.

“We got a gold yesterday so it feels pretty good.”