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Henrik Kristoffersen Wins World Cup Slalom as 1st-Run Leader Tanguy Nef Falters

Associated Press

Last Updated: February 26, 2022, 19:45 IST

From left, second placed Switzerland's Loic Meillard, the winner, Norway's Henrik Kristoffersen and third placed Austria's Manuel Feller, celebrate after an alpine ski, men's World Cup slalom race, in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Marco Tacca)

From left, second placed Switzerland's Loic Meillard, the winner, Norway's Henrik Kristoffersen and third placed Austria's Manuel Feller, celebrate after an alpine ski, men's World Cup slalom race, in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Marco Tacca)

Kristoffersen became the seventh different winner after seven slalom races this season, as the battle for the discipline title is still wide open with the first seven racers separated by just 39 points.

Norwegian skier Henrik Kristoffersen won his first men’s World Cup slalom in more than a year Saturday, benefiting from a mistake by first-run leader Tanguy Nef.

The unheralded Swiss skier, who started 25th and whose best career result is sixth place, led a World Cup race for the first time.

Nef had been 0.07 faster than Kristoffersen in the first leg and he managed to maintain that advantage in his final run until straddling a gate just before going into the steep finish section.

Nef’s mishap handed Kristoffersen his 19th career slalom win, but only the first since triumphing in Chamonix, France, in January 2021.

Switzerland’s Loic Meillard, who trailed Kristoffersen by one-hundredth of a second after the first run, finished 0.14 behind in second.

Manuel Feller trailed by 0.51 in third, followed by his Austrian teammate and three-time Olympic medalist, Johannes Strolz.

Olympic champion Clément Noël skied out in his second run. Racing in mild temperatures, the Frenchman struggled on the soft snow conditions and finished 1.18 seconds off the lead in the first run.

Kristoffersen became the seventh different winner after seven slalom races this season, as the battle for the discipline title is still wide open with the first seven racers separated by just 39 points.

There are three more races remaining, including one at the same venue on Sunday. A race win is worth 100 points.

Kristoffersen’s teammate Lucas Braathen, who leads the slalom standings, straddled a gate halfway down his run, but he was already more than eight-tenths of a second off the lead at the first split.

Braathen had his lead reduced to just a single point over Kristoffersen, with Meillard now 10 and Feller 12 points behind.

Another Norwegian favorite, slalom world champion Sebastian Foss-Solevåg, failed to finish his opening run.

Spanish skier Joaquim Salarich, who wore bib No. 50 and had earned World Cup points at just two previous races, finished 1.11 behind for a career-best eighth.

Salarich finished well ahead of defending overall champion Alexis Pinturault and World Cup slalom champion Marco Schwarz in 15th and 16th, respectively.

Dace Ryding, who became the first British winner in World Cup history by taking the Kitzbühel slalom last month, was more than two seconds off the pace in 20th.

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first published:February 26, 2022, 19:45 IST
last updated:February 26, 2022, 19:45 IST