Alpine skiing: W. Championship hosts unveil 'Raptor' piste

The new women's speed course at Beaver Creek built for the 2015 alpine World Championships will bear the name "Raptor," championship organizers said Friday.

Raptor will get its first test November 29-December 1 during the opening races of the women's World Cup speed season, featuring a downhill, super G and giant slalom.

Six-time World Cup downhill ski champion Lindsey Vonn, who returned to snow training at the weekend after a season-ending crash at the World Championships in Austria in February, is targeting a return to racing at that World Cup stop.

Beaver Creek already boasts the Birds of Prey speed course, developed for the 1999 alpine world championships and now a regular host of men's World Cup races.

American Stacey Cook is among the skiers who have trained on the new slope.

"It's challenging to say the least," Cook said. "It's narrow and in your face.

"We're right up against the fences and there's a lot of forces to deal with, particularly high speeds combined with big turns, which is something that doesn't get combined very often in women's downhill.

"You're going to have to be really strong to be fast."

bb/adm