Bormio, Italy, Mar. 18–The incomparable Hermann Maier ended his WorldCup season going out in the second run, paving the way for teammateBenjamin Raich to win the final giant slalom of the season in Bormio.American Daron Rahlves (Truckee, CA) went off course in the first run.Maier had to sweat out the GS title, though, as teammate Christian Mayerwas second by only .17. A win would have given Mayer the GScrown.
Raich came from behind with the fourth-fastest second run to take thewin in 2:25.64. Mayer and teamate Heinz Schilchegger were second andthird.
Rahlves was off sync right from the start and eventually got too farbehind and went off course about a third of the way into the race.
“This hurts, it really hurts,” said Rahlves, whose pair of downhillvictories in Norway two weeks ago have boosted his confidence. “I wasnever really on it today. It’s tough for me because I wanted to go outwith a good finish.”
Maier ended his season with four World Cup titles: overall, downhill,super G and giant slalom. The top American was Bode Miller (Franconia,NH) in 31st, who failed to qualify for the World Cup finals.
The men’s World Cup wraps up Sunday with the slalom. There are noAmericans qualified.
World Cup Finals
Men’s Giant Slalom
1. Benjamin Raich, AUT, 2:25.64
2. Christian Mayer, AUT, 2:25.81
3. Heinz Schilchegger, AUT, 2:25.88
4. Mitja Kunc, SLO, 2:25.99
5. Hans Knauss, AUT, 2:26.24
6. Michael Von Gruenigen, SUI, 2:26.28
7. Didier Defago, SUI, 2:26.29
8. Fredrik Nyberg, SWE, 2:26.30
9. Marco Buechel, LIE, 2:26.34
10. Didier Cuche, SUI, 2:26.61
Daron Rahlves, Truckee, CA, did not finish 1st run
Final Men’s World Cup Giant Slalom Standings
1. Hermann Maier, AUT, 520
2. Christian Mayer, AUT, 517
3. Michael Von Gruenigen,m SUI, 466
4. Benjamin Raich, AUT, 420
5. Joel Chenal, FRA, 349
6. Marco Buechel, LIE, 290
7. Fredrik Nyberg, SWE, 279
8. Mitja Kunc, SLO, 275
9. Kjetil Andre Aamodt, NOR, 259
10. Heinz Schilchegger, AUT, 233
31. Bode Miller, Franconia, NH, 39
35. Dane Spencer, Boise, ID, 30
38. Erik Schlopy, Park City, UT, 26
39. Thomas Vonn, Newburgh, NY, 25
47T. Daron Rahlves, Truckee, CA, 6