Lara Gut-Behrami moved top of the Alpine Skiing World Cup standings following her first downhill triumph of the season in Val di Fassa.
The Swiss star, in search of her first Crystal Globe since 2016, edged out Ramona Siebenhofer to claim victory in the first World Cup event since the World Championships – which saw the in-form Gut-Behrami earn two golds and a bronze.
The 29-year-old picked up her speed as her run went on to finish two-hundredths of a second clear of Siebenhofer, whose time of 1:23.95 had looked like being enough until Gut-Behrami's swift finish.
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Gut-Behrami's victory saw her leapfrog Slovakia's Petra Vlhova, who finished ninth in Val di Fassa, at the overall summit in a battle which looks set to go down to the wire – just 29 points separate the pair with 10 races still remaining.
Corinne Suter, who claimed World Championship downhill gold 13 days ago, took bronze on this occasion as the 26-year-old swapped places with her compatriot Gut-Behrami on the podium.
Kira Weidle and the Breezy Johnson finished narrowly outside the medal places and the latter is now joint-second alongside Suter in the race for the downhill globe.
With leader Sofia Goggia set to miss the remainder of the season through injury, Johnson has a chance to become just the third American to claim the prize.
She doesn't have long to wait to strengthen her claims, with another downhill taking place on the Italian track on Saturday.
The weekend's action then concludes with Sunday's super-G.
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