KRANJSKA GORA (AFP) –
Croatia’s Ivica Kostelic won a World Cup slalom race here on Sunday, with Marcel Hirscher of Austria finishing second to clinch the season’s crystal globe in the discipline.
France’s Alexis Pinturault went fastest by a good margin on the first run, but he skied out on the second with victory in his sights, clearing the way for the veteran Kostelic to win a World Cup slalom for the first time since he triumphed at Wengen in January, 2012.
Hirscher was a disappointing eighth after the first run, but hit back with a near-perfect second run that brought him to within 00.19 secs of winning.
As it turned out he was already assured of winning the crystal globe as his nearest challenger and the only man who could have overtaken him – Germany’s Felix Neureuther – failed to complete the first leg.
His second place points haul also meant that Hirscher consolidated his lead in the overall World Cup standings over speed king Aksel Lund Svindval and he now has a 149 points margin over the Norwegian with just four races to go.
“Next Sunday we will see who has the most points to win the big crystal globe,” said the Austrian, who was still unsure whether he will start in the super-G at Lenzerheide next week.
“But a lead of 149 points isn’t too bad all the same. is it?”
Mario Matt of Austria took third place with two steady runs.Published 10 Mar 2013, 19:34 IST