The men's downhill - the premier event of the World Alpine Ski Championships - was postponed Saturday because of heavy overnight snows, and rescheduled for Monday.

Fifteen inches of snow fell on the course Friday night and into Saturday. During a two-hour period early Saturday morning, snow fell at the rate of three inches per hour.An abundance of snow is a boon to ski areas but interferes with racing because it must be swept from the race course. Loose snow creates a noticeably slower race, and competitors prefer a hard, fast surface.

The women's downhill remained scheduled for Sunday at Vail. The rescheduling of the men's downhill for Monday bumped the women's slalom from that day to Tuesday. In turn, the men's super giant slalom was bumped to Wednesday, when it will be held the same day as the women's super-G.

The World Championships schedule still contains one open date, next Friday, before the competition concludes two days later, on Feb. 12.

Officials said the flat sections of Beaver Creek's Centennial course had been regroomed for the downhill at 8 p.m. Friday. By 3 a.m. Saturday, course workers had to grapple with eight inches of new snow on the course. By 5 a.m., the storm had dumped 14 inches.

Crews attempted to clear snow from the course throughout the night, but it was falling faster than workers could remove it.