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Kostelic kids take both slaloms


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KRANJSKA GORA, Slovenia (Jan. 5) – Defending World Cup slalom champion IvicaKostelic of Croatia overcame a foot of new, soft snow and completed abrother-sister slalom sweep Sunday, capturing a men’s SL less than an hour afterhis sister Janica won a women’s race in Bormio, Italy. Tom Rothrock (Cashmere,WA) hung-up the top U.S. performance, finishing 12th while World Cup leader BodeMiller (Franconia, NH) straddled a gate early in the first run.

Outdoor Life Network will broadcast coverage of the race today at 4 p.m. EST andtelevises a weekly recap of World Cup highlights each Thursday night at 10 EST.

Kostelic, the first-run leader – as his sister had been in the women’s race, wonin 1:44.71 with Austrian Rainer Schoenfelder second (1:44.98).

Rothrock, who best previous World Cup showing was a pairs of 16ths last season,was 23rd in the first run but took advantage of his early start on the finaltrip and finished in 1:46.81. Knight’s time was 1:47.69. Although he failed tofinish, Miller maintained his spot atop the points list because No. 2 StephanEberharter of Austria doesn’t ski slalom, except in rare instances.

“We had a foot of wet snow on top during the night. That was a big surprise foreverybody and it made a rough course,” said U.S. SL/GS Head Coach MartinAndersen. “And it didn’t turn cold overnight, either, so it was tough.

“But Thomas had the best result of his career, finishing 12th. That was great.He needed that result,” Andersen said. “We know he’s fast but he wassecond-fastest in the second run; he skied the top pretty much in control andthen he really hit the hardest part, from the middle down. He killed the bottomof the run.”

The soupy conditions didn’t favor Knight, one of the huskiest and strongestgate-runners. “Chip’s too strong for these conditions,” Andersen said. “It wasicy to begin with but then it broke through because of the wet snow and theconditions were so bad…so, for him to get points again with a couple of mistakesand the bad conditions is good.”

The irony, Andersen said, is that Miller, who had three World Cup SL wins a yearago, is leading the World Cup standings – overall and in giant slalom – butstill hasn’t scored a point in slalom after three races. “Yeah, sure, Bode’sstruggling in slalom,” Andersen said, “but we know he can do it. He still couldwin the world championship and he still could win the title; we have plenty ofraces left…and he could do it.”

The men, who raced a downhill Dec. 29 in Bormio return to the Italian resort fortheir races, running downhill and super G next Saturday and Sunday, two racesshifted from snow-troubled Chamonix, France.

Kranjska Gora, SLO
Men’s Slalom – Jan. 5
1. Ivica Kostelic, Croatia, 1:44.71
2. Rainer Schoenfelder, Austria, 1:44.98
3. Jean-Pierre Vidal, France, 1:45.03
4. Kalle Palander, Finland, 1:46.07
5. Manfred Pranger, Austria, 1:46.18

12. Tom Rothrock, Cashmere, WA, 1:46.81
23. Chip Knight, Stowe, VT, 1:47.69

Did not qualify for 2nd run: TJ Lanning, Park City, UT; Jake Zamansky,Carbondale, CO; Steve Nyman, Sundance, UT;DNF-1: Bode Miller, Franconia, NH; Erik Schlopy, Park City, UT

World Cup Standings (16 races)
1. Miller, 578
2. Stephan Eberharter, Austria, 555
3. Didier Defago, Switerland, 414
4. Kjetil Andre Aamodt, Norway, 389
5. Didier Cuche, Switzerland, 353

18. Daron Rahlves, Sugar Bowl, CA, 205
37. Schlopy, 112
46. Knight, 84
66T. Rothrock, 39
74T. Jake Fiala, Frisco, CO, 29
81T. Thomas Vonn, Newburgh, NY, 24
113T. Dane Spencer, Boise, ID, 9

Slalom (3 races)
1. Kostelic, 218
2. Schoenfelder, 180
3. Vidal, 145
4. Pranger, 121
5. Benjamin Raich, Austria, 110

8. Knight, 84
18T. Rothrock, 39
41. Schlopy, 4

Janica takes her fourth slalom

BORMIO, Italy (Jan. 5) – World Cup leader Janica Kostelic of Croatia collectedher fourth slalom victory of the season – her third straighht – as she led bothruns Sunday and won by more than two seconds over Austrian Elisabeth Goergl. TopAmerican was Kristina Koznick (Burnsville, MN) in 10th place as three U.S.skiers posted top-20s.

Outdoor Life Network broadcasts World Cup highlights each Thursday night at 10EST.

Kostelic, who led by .59 over Austrian Marlies Schild after the opening run, wonin 1:36.74 with Goergl posting a two-run time of 1:38.82. Anja Paerson ofSweden, who did a belly-whopper slide through part of the finish area Dec. 1when she won a slalom during the Chevy Truck Aspen Winternational, completed thepodium in third place.

Koznick had a two-run time of 1:39.23 with Schleper 17th in 1:39.89. JuliaMancuso (Olympic Valley, CA) was 20th with a time of 1:39.97.

The win pushed Kostelic past the thousand-points mark (1,055) for the winter;she stands 486 points ahead of Italian Karen Putzer in second place.

The women, who had Saturday GS and the slalom moved from Berchtesgaden, Germany,because of poor snow, also have had two races scheduled for next weekend inInnsbruck canceled because of no snow. So, they have nearly a two-week breakbefore reconvening Jan. 18-19 in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy.

Bormio, ITA – Jan. 5
Women’s SL (Moved from Berchtesgaden, GER)
1. Janica Kostelic, Croatia, 1:39.23
2. Elisabeth Goergl, Austria, 1:38.82
3. Tanja Poutiainen, Finland, 1:38.91
4. Sonja Nef, Switzerland, 1:38.96
5. Monika Bergmann, Germany, 1:39.14

12. Kristina Koznick, Burnsville, MN, 1:39.23
13. Sarah Schleper, Vail, CO, 1:39.89
24. Julia Mancuso, Olympic Valley, CA, 1:39.97

Did not qualify for 2nd run: Resi Stiegler, Jackson Hole, WY; Caroline Lalive,Steamboat Springs, CO

World Cup Standings
Women’s Overall (18 races)
1. Kostelic – 1,055 points
2. Karen Putzer, Italy, 569
3. Michaela Dorfmeister, Austria, 520
4. Martina Ertl, Germany, 479
5. Sonja Nef, Switzerland, 470

8. Kirsten Clark, Raymond, ME, 367
13. Schleper, 242
19. Lalive, 202
36. Jonna Mendes, Heavenly, CA, 120
42. Mancuso, 107
44T. Koznick, 101
66T. Katie Monahan, Aspen, CO, 39
84T. Libby Ludlow, Bellevue, WA, and Stiegler, 24 each
99T. Bryna McCarty, Concord, VT, 6

Women’s Slalom (6 races)
1. Kostelic, 530
2. Paerson, 278
3. Christel Pascal, France, 258
4. Poutiainen, 240
5. Marlies Schild, Austria, 203

11. Schleper, 159
19. Koznick, 76
37. Stiegler, 24
42. Mancuso, 17