Vail's Vonn skis out in Courchevel slalom; Ligety misses podium in Alta Badia

By Real Vail
Real AspenDecember 18, 2011
Vail's Lindsey Vonn saw her four-race winning streak snapped today when she skied out in the first run of a World Cup slalom in snowy Courchevel, France. Slalom specialist Marlies Schild won the race by a huge margin on a soft, tricky course.

Vonn's fellow Ski and Snowboard Club Vail products, veteran Sarah Schleper and phenom Mikaela Shiffrin, also had tough days. Schleper failed to qualify for a second run, and Shiffrin skied out like Vonn.

Vonn still holds a commanding 236 point lead in the early World Cup overall standings heading into a night slalom in Flachau, Austria. Defending overall World Cup champion Maria Hoefl-Riesch, of Germany, failed to finish the second run today.

Courchevel received more than three feet of snow in the last two days after virtually no snow all season. Saturday's giant slalom was cancelled because of the heavy snowfall.

The men's circuit, in Italy, saw a downhill in Val Gardena cancelled Saturday because of high winds after American Bode Miller finished second in a super-G there Friday.

Park City, Utah's Ted Ligety was in good shape after the first run of a giant slalom in Alta Badia, Italy, today, leading by .49 seconds. But the reigning World Cup giant slalom champion lost time on the bottom of the second run to finish just .01 seconds off the podium. Italy's Massimiliano Blardone won the race for the third time.

Ligety, a winner in a GS at Beaver Creek earlier this season, held onto the discipline lead 330-265 over Austrian Marcel Hirscher, who finished fifth on the day.

“Ted lost the gas pedal a little bit on the second run and just in general is capable of skiing so much better,” U.S. men's head coach Sasha Rearick said. “Both he and Hirscher lost speed on the bottom and Ted got a little gift with Hirscher finishing behind him.”

The men compete in a slalom in Alta Badia on Monday.

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