Curtoni leads Italian sweep in Bansko downhill, Shiffrin fourth

The 28-year-old finished ahead of teammates Bassino and Brignone to clinch maiden World Cup win.

Italy ruled the women's downhill event in Bansko, Bulgaria.

Wearing the bib no. 28, Elena Curtoni took her first World Cup win as she finished 0.10 sec. ahead of teammate Marta Bassino.

Federica Brignone crossed the line in third (+0.14 sec.) for her second podium in as many days.

For the first time in World Cup history three Italians made it a podium clean sweep in a women's downhill race.

Mikaela Shiffrin ended just outside the podium in fourth position, 0.35 sec. behind the winner.

The American star firmly remains at the top of the overall World Cup standings with 1.125 points, ahead of Brignone (855) and Petra Vlhova (790), who finished 11th on the Marc Girardelli course.

Shiffrin is also second in the downhill rankings behind leader Corinne Suter from Switzerland.

The Bansko downhill course proved to be very technical for many speed specialists.

Previously Curtoni, a Super-G junior gold medallist in 2011, had only reached the podium on three occasions, the last one in Crans-Montana in 2017.

"This win represents a turning point for my career: in 2017 I finished fourth in the Super-G overall rankings and then two serious injuries stopped me," the 28-year-old said to the Italian Winter Sports Federation (FISI).

"It was special to share my first win and my first podium after the podium with my teammates, it was emotional to see only Italian flags."

Shiffrin, who yesterday clinched her 65th World Cup win on the same course, was happy with her performance:

"I felt like in some parts the speed was a bit higher than yesterday," the American said.

"I wasn't taking any crazy risk.

"My skiing felt good. I'm proud of how I have skied over the last couple of days."

Women will be in action again in Bansko on Sunday 26 for the Super-G event.

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