Updated: Thursday, 13 March 2014 01:30 | By Agence France-Presse

Hoefl-Riesch injured, but takes downhill crown

Maria Hoefl-Riesch clinched the women's alpine skiing downhill World Cup at Lenzerheide on Wednesday, but her hopes of taking the overall crown were shattered by a bad fall.

Hoefl-Riesch injured, but takes downhill crown

Germany's Maria Hoefl-Riesch is evacuated by helicopter after she crashed during the women's downhill at the FIS alpine skiing World Cup finals on March 12, 2014 in Lenzerheide - by Fabrice Coffrini

The German came to grief halfway down the course and was taken to hospital for a checkup on injuries to her arm and shoulder.

It was later announced that those injuries would prevent her from competing in the three final world cup events in Lenzerheide, the slalom, giant slalom and super-G.

The only rival who could pip her to the downhill World Cup, Austria's Anna Fenninger, could only place sixth when she needed to win the race to take the title.

However, Fenninger did move 11 points ahead in the overall World Cup standings, and with Hoefl-Riesch out of the final three races of the season, the Austrian is almost certain to win the overall Crystal Globe.

Hoefl-Riesch was already aware she had clinched the downhill title when she went off last in the race. 

But it was clear from the start that a high fever she had been running was unsettling her and she lost control of her skis halfway down, sending her crashing into the safety netting.

"Let's hope that Maria is okay," said Fenninger.

"As for me, I just need to focus on my next two races."

The downhill was won by Switzerland's Lara Gut, who chalked up her sixth race victory of the season ahead of Austrian's Elisabeth Goergl and fellow Swiss Fraenzi Aufdenblatten.

It means only Slovenia's Tina Maze could theoretically still upset Fenninger's overall Crystal Globe bid but to do so she would have to win all three of the slalom, giant slalom and super-G.

It means Fenninger can clinch overall victory in the Thursday's super-G, an event in which she is the Olympic champion but where Gut has a huge lead in the World Cup standings, by earning 14 or more points.

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