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Americans shine in slalom

American skier Stephani Victor threw her arms in the air after she realized that she had won the sitting skier class in Wednesday’s Disabled World Cup slalom race at Howelsen Hill.

After finishing second to U.S. Ski Team Member Laurie Stephens in the first two giant slalom races of the World Cup season, Victor was thrilled to finally find the No.1 spot on the podium.

“It’s been close,” Victor said. “My hats off to her for winning the last few days because the weather has been so awful. Today, the conditions were really nice, and I took full advantage of a fast ski and a great course.”

Victor, who is not a member of the U.S. Ski Team, led both runs and finished with a two-run total of 1 minute, 31.14 seconds. Stephens kept things close, finishing at 1:34.87. Christiane Singhammer of Germany was third with a time of 1:38.20.

The top spot on the podium in the women’s standing skier class also belonged to an American.

After missing the podium in the first two giant slalom races this week, U.S. Ski Team member Allison Jones held off Slovakia’s Iveta Chlebakova in the second run to win.

“I’m not a giant slalom racer,” Jones said. “I had some issues with the giant slalom, but slalom is my event, and I’m gong to come back looking for retribution.”

She got a little in the opening slalom by topping the field with a time of 1:29.27. Chlebakova was second at 1:30.95, and American Sandy Dukat finished third with a time of 1:32.10.

American’s Hannah Pennington was 12th, and Elitsa Storey was 16th.

“This hill is very straight up,” Jones said about Howelsen. “It says, ‘This is what I am, and you have to come conquer me if you want to win.’ You just have to do it. You can’t be intimidated by the hill.”

France’s Pascale Casaova kept her streak alive in the visually impaired class by winning her third race of the week — the first slalom.

Casanova, led by guide Jean Philippe Mauriet, finished the race with a time of 1:27.56 to win the class. Carme Garcia, helped by guide Marina Romero, placed second with a time of 1:36.05, and Anna Cohi, led by guide Moi Gonzalez, finished third with a time of 1:43.77.

The Disabled World Cup will come to an end today with the final race of the week. The slalom is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. with the second run scheduled for 1 p.m. at Howelsen Hill.


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