Haeusl Breaks Leg in Dramatic Downhill Title Win

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Bormio, Italy Mar. 15 (AP)--Germany's Regina Haeusl fell at the finish, fracturing the tibia and fibula in her right shinbone, but won the women's World Cup downhill title by placing ninth in the season finale.

France's Regine Cavagnoud won the race, beating runner-up Corinne Rey-Bellet of Switzerland by .73 seconds. In scoring her second victory of the season, Cavagnoud was timed in 1 minute, 33.01 seconds.

Austrian Renate Goetschl, who was trying to catch Haeusl for the title, placed third, .79 seconds behind the winner.

Goetschl ended the season only five points behind Haeusl, who regained the downhill title for Germany two years after Katja Seizinger won.

Goetschl, who leads the women's overall standings with three races left, had been hoping to give Austria a double triumph hours after Hermann Maier won the men's downhill title.

Haeusl, who had entered the race 36 points ahead of Goetschl, fell after crossing the finish line, twisted her leg skidding into the fences and was rushed to a hospital after treatment by race officials.

Team doctors said Haeusl would be flown home to the Murnau clinic in Germany, near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, for surgery.

Ninth place gave her 529 points in the downhill standings, Goetschl finished with 524.

The World Cup finals continue Thursday with the men's and women's super-G races.

Copyright (c) 2000 The Associated Press

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