Marcel Hirscher wins big again in a World Cup giant slalom
VAL D’ISERE, France (AP) — Marcel Hirscher dominated yet again in the World Cup on Saturday, winning a giant slalom by a huge 1.18-second margin.
The seven-time defending overall champion protected his first-run lead in steady falling snow to leave Henrik Kristoffersen runner-up yet again.
Kristoffersen has finished second to Hirscher in seven giant slaloms, including at the Pyeongchang Olympics, since last December.
Matts Olsson placed third, trailing by 1.31 on the Face de Bellevarde slope.
Hirscher has now finished on the podium in every giant slalom race since October 2016, including winning world and Olympic titles in that span.
It was his 60th career World Cup win, though he could be awarded another if Stefan Luitz is disqualified from victory in GS at Beaver Creek last Sunday for using an oxygen mask between runs.
The International Ski Federation is investigating the incident, which appears to break its anti-doping rules even though oxygen inhalation is not prohibited by the World Anti-Doping Agency.
“I think it is not Stefan’s mistake,” Hirscher said. “As a professional athlete you have to trust your coaches, doctors.”
Luitz’s difficult week continued Saturday when he placed 30th and last of the second-run starters. The German skier had been eighth-fastest in the first run but made a big mistake that took him into rough snow.
Tommy Ford of the United States got a career-best finish of sixth, 1.69 behind Hirscher.
Hirscher will start favorite for a slalom on Sunday with strong winds expected and snowfall overnight.