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Loic Meillard caps successful weekend in Aspen with World Cup slalom win

ASPEN, Colo. (AP) — Loic Meillard of Switzerland capped a podium-filled weekend in Aspen by winning a World Cup slalom.

After taking second in back-to-back giant slalom races in the glitzy resort town, Meillard overcame a first-run deficit to win Sunday with a combined time of 1 minute, 42.73 seconds. He held off Linus Strasser of Germany by 0.89 seconds, while Norway’s Henrik Kristoffersen finished third. France’s Clement Noel, the leader after the opening run, struggled on the course in his final run and didn’t finish.

“A long weekend,” Meillard said on the broadcast, “but very happy with how it went.”

Manuel Feller of Austria moved up to fifth on the final run to maintain a sizeable lead in the season-long World Cup slalom standings. He’s ahead by 169 points over Strasser heading into the final two races in the discipline. Each win is worth 100 points.

Three Americans made the top 30 to earn a second run, with Jett Seymour leading the way in 25th place. He was four seconds behind Meillard’s winning time.

This was Meillard’s third career World Cup win and first in slalom.

“It took some time in slalom. I was always there but never quite in front,” Meillard said. “It’s amazing to do it and definitely in a tough race.”

This was quite a weekend for the Swiss team as Marco Odermatt won both GS races, holding off Meillard. Odermatt has already clinched both the season-long GS crown and a third straight overall World Cup title.

Meillard joins an accomplished group of racers who’ve won the slalom in Aspen during a men’s World Cup event. The list includes Billy Kidd (1968), Ingemar Stenmark (1976), Rudolf Nierlich (1991), Thomas Stangassinger (1998), Ivica Kostelic (2001), Mario Matt (2001) and Andre Myhrer (2017).

Snowy conditions Sunday made for a challenging first run in which 25 competitors didn’t finish the tricky course and one was disqualified. Meillard was the only racer to finish within one second of Noel’s opening run.

The men’s World Cup circuit heads to Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, for giant slalom and slalom events next weekend.


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