Giant Slalom – Blardone victorious

Crans-Montana, Switzerland – Massimiliano Blardone has mastered a rapidly deteriorating course to gain at the expense of the leader of the World Cup giant slalom Marcel Hirscher yesterday.

The Italian 32 year old had two hundredths behind after a round but prevailed in 2:33,77, earning his second win of the season.

“Another victory for an” old “” he has joked, after the victories of veteran Didier Cuche and Benjamin Raich super-G, the previous two days.

The Austrian Hirscher finished 16 hundredths behind. His teammate Hannes Reichelt climbed from 11th to third place, finishing just 82 hundredths of a winner.

Scoring with 80 points, Hirscher increased his overall lead and that of discipline, to three weeks of the end of the calendar. He has 92 points higher than the general Croatian Ivica Kostelic, the defending champion. The latter is currently in the gap following knee surgery.

Defending champion in giant slalom, American Ted Ligety, finished ninth. Faced with a softer track the sun in the afternoon, he lost the first two rows in the second inning.

Aksel Lund Svindal of Norway has dropped dramatically when his right wrist hung a door. He suffered from a stiff neck, but was not injured seriously.

Third overall with 95 points Hirscher, Switzerland’s Beat Feuz could erode the ground next weekend in Norway, where there will be three sprint races. Hirscher, specialist technical events, remain at home to train for the finals of the World Cup in Schladming. Hirscher Ligety leads by 132 points in the standings in the giant slalom, with two races to go. The American won the title in the discipline three times in the last four seasons.

Dustin Cook of Lac-Sainte-Marie (Outaouais) was the only Canadian to complete the first round, but his time of 1:19,48 was not sufficient to reach the second round. Jean-Philippe Roy of Sainte-Flavie, in the Lower St. Lawrence, has not completed the first round.

Moreover, American Lindsey Vonn, again, shows his talent by winning the last Super-G in Bansko, Bulgaria, its tenth win of the season in World Cup alpine skiing.

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