March 16, 2016

ST. MORITZ, Switzerland (AP) Lara Gut made her overall World Cup title official on Wednesday, and Lindsey Vonn flew in to collect her eighth crystal globe in the downhill.

Although Gut's title - the first for a Swiss woman in 21 years - was effectively sealed last weekend at nearby Lenzerheide, it became a mathematical certainty in front of more home fans at the World Cup finals in St. Moritz.

Mirjam Puchner won Wednesday's race, taking advantage of the snowy conditions on the Engianda course to claim her first World Cup downhill victory. The Austrian beat Fabienne Suter of Switzerland by 0.13 seconds, with Elena Curtoni of Italy third, 0.17 behind.

Gut finished 13th.

Vonn clinched the downhill title before her crash in a super-G in Andorra last month and was in St. Moritz to pick up her 20th crystal globe.

''I feel like I had a really great year,'' Vonn said. ''Nine wins and to be able to still take home one globe at least even though I had to end my season early it means a lot because you work so hard and I was so close, I was leading four titles when I got hurt so to still have at least one, that was huge so I'm pretty excited about it.''

Gut is only 19 points behind Vonn in the super-G standings, with the final race coming Thursday.

''I don't think super-G will hold but weirder things have happened in skiing,'' Vonn said. ''I'll be at the finish tomorrow and maybe a miracle will happen.''

Puchner's previous best finish was eighth in the downhill in Val d'Isere in December.

''It's incredible,'' the Austrian said. ''My goal for today was 10th place so to end up first is amazing. I'm really looking forward to the world championships next year here now.''

Daniela Merighetti of Italy crashed in what was her last event before retiring, landing badly after a jump. The race was halted briefly while she received treatment but she managed to ski down the rest of the course before being taken immediately to first aid.

With her downhill title, Vonn broke the mark of 19 crystal globes held by Ingemar Stenmark of Sweden. It was one of several records she broke this season and she is now only 10 behind Stenmark's all-time mark of 86 victories.

''Season-long titles are really difficult to get and Stenmark obviously is a legend and to have anything more than he's accomplished is pretty unbelievable,'' Vonn said. ''I'm very proud of that.

''Whether I get it (the all-time win record) next year or the following year, it's really irrelevant,'' Vonn added. ''My goals are the world championships and the Olympics. I think the Olympics is probably the biggest goal, but to break Stenmark's record would be amazing.''

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