Svindal wins final super-G; Miller takes title

LENZERHEIDE, Switzerland -- Bode Miller captured the super-G
season title with his performance Thursday, finishing tied for
fourth behind winner Aksel Lund Svindal at the World Cup finals.

Miller's finish give him 304 super-G points for the season, well
ahead of newly crowned downhill champion Didier Cuche of

"I'm proud. I'm more proud he didn't let it slip away because
he's been so dominant all year," U.S. men's coach John McBride
said. "Things have fallen off at the end of the year for one
reason or another, but he proved for the majority of the season
he's a dominant super-G skier."

Svindal, chasing Benjamin Raich of Austria for the overall
title, clocked a winning time of 1:17.94 on the 1.24-mile Silvano
Beltrametti course. Svindal also won the season's final downhill on

Raich, an all-around skier who prefers the technical races,
finished a strong second in 1:18.07 to maintain a three-point
overall lead over Svindal with two races remaining.

Raich, who for the second day in a row benefited from his early
start number and the course's tight gating, leads the overall with 1,155 points.

Miller won two of the five super-G events this season, in Val
Gardena, Italy, and Hinterstoder, Italy.

He also had downhill victories this year at Beaver Creek, Colo.,
and Wengen, Switzerland, but his difficulties in completing slaloms
left him too far behind to challenge for the overall title.

Starting last, Miller came through only a 10th of a second
behind Svindal at the middle interval and seemed to be picking up
speed. But he slipped back in the final stretch to finish even with
Marco Buechel at 1:18.33, 0.39 seconds back.

Miller won the super-G title in 2005, when he also became the
first American man in 22 years to claim the World Cup overall
title. He was mathematically eliminated Wednesday from the race for
the overall crown.

Erik Guay of Canada was third in 1:18.29.

Svindal has 1,152 points and Cuche remains in contention in
third with 1,048, but will have difficulty gaining ground in this
weekend's final giant slalom and slalom races.

Miller ended the season 94 points ahead of Cuche for the
smaller, super-G globe. John Kucera of Canada, 15th on Thursday,
finished third 110 points behind.

Fritz Strobl, the 2002 Olympic downhill champion, ended his
career by skiing down the slope in a Mozart costume complete with
wig. The Austrian finished last, nearly a minute off the pace,
after slowing to receive congratulations from staff and coaches on
the course.