Story highlights

Horror crash at Val Gardena downhill

Marc Gisin airlifted to hospital

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde wins

CNN  — 

Swiss skier Marc Gisin suffered a horror crash in Saturday’s World Cup men’s downhill at Val Gardena won by Norway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde.

The 30-year-old lost control just before the notorious ‘camel hump’ section of the course and was thrown high into the air before sliding along the piste on his back and side.

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The race was interrupted for half an hour while the unconscious Gisin received urgent treatment before being airlifted to hospital at Bolzano.

Kilde and the other podium finishers, Max Franz of Austria and Swiss Beat Feuz, were seen on television looking away as they witnessed the crash, with obvious concerns for Gisin’s safety.

Gisin was later transferred from hospital in Italy to Lucerne and it was confirmed by the Swiss skiing federation that he had suffered “no serious injury” despite the initial fears.

“Very painful for him are several rib fractures on the right side, and injuries to his lungs,” said a statement.

“For optimal monitoring and care, Marc Gisin will remain hospitalized for the time being in the intensive care unit,” it added.

Switzerland's Marc Gisin slid down the Saslong piste on his back and side after a nasty crash just before the 'camel hump' section of the downhill course.

Both Gisin’s sisters are world class skiers, with Michelle winning combined gold at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang earlier this year and Dominique taking downhill gold in Sochi four years earlier.

When racing resumed, Norway’s Aksel Lund Svindal, winner of the super-G Friday at the Italian Dolomite resort, could only manage seventh place and he has lost his lead in the overall World Cup standings to Franz.

A rescue helicopter transports Switzerland's Marc Gisin to hospital after his horror crash in the World Cup men's downhill at Val Gardena.

It was the 26-year-old Kilde’s second World Cup win, both in downhill, and comes off the back of an excellent third place in the super-G at Beaver Creek in the United States earlier this month.

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His time of one minute 56.13 seconds on the Saslong course left him 0.86 seconds clear of Franz, with Feuz 0.92 seconds behind. Feuz and Franz are joint top of the downhill standings after three rounds.

Norwegian skiers have won seven of the last 10 races at the Val Gardena weekend, dating back to 2014, while there was also a strong performance from the emerging US team of Bryce Bennett, Steve Nyman and Travis Ganong in fourth, fifth and sixth.