Olympics Likely Over for Kostelic, Kildow

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February 22, 2006

SESTIERE, Italy (AP Press Release)—Two of the biggest names in women's Alpine skiing could miss the last race of the Turin Games. After disappointing slalom finishes Wednesday, ailing Croatian Janica Kostelic said she was all but certain to skip Friday's giant slalom, an event in which she is the reigning Olympic champion.

And an aching American Lindsey Kildow said she might skip the race as well.

Kostelic, who has been battling illness for almost two weeks, was bumped from the podium Wednesday by the last racer of the day _ rival and gold medalist Anja Paerson.

"For these games I'm done, said Kostelic, who was also too sick to ski the downhill. "I really can't do more. It's too much for my body. I tried today and I gave it all. That's it.

The 24-year-old Kostelic has won six medals in two Olympics, the most ever by a female Alpine skier. Wednesday's race was the first time in seven Olympic races at Turin and Salt Lake City four years ago that she failed to medal.

Kildow has entered all four events so far, but is still in pain from a training crash last week.

After finishing 14th on Wednesday, more than 2 1/2 seconds behind Paerson, Kildow sounded pessimistic about racing again but said she'll decide during the warmup before the giant slalom.

"I'll try, but if it's really bugging me before I race, I may pull out, Kildow said. "It's going to be pretty darn hard on my back.

Copyright © 2006 The Associated Press