Mateja Svet Wins Her 2nd World Cup Slalom

From Associated Press

Mateja Svet of Yugoslavia skied the two fastest heats today and won her second World Cup giant slalom of the season.

Svet outclassed her opponents with an aggregate time of 1:54.31 minutes, leaving Austria's Anita Wachter 0.84 seconds behind in second place on an icy run in bright sunshine.

But Wachter, the season's most consistent skier, virtually clinched the giant slalom title, picking up 20 points for a 120 total with two events to go. She also gained on overall leader and teammate Petra Kronberger, whose 14th-place finish brought only two points.

American skier Diann Roffe, giant slalom titlist at the 1985 World Championships, finished third. She moved into second place in the specialty standings but trails Wachter by 46 points.

In the second of two 45-gate heats, both Roffe and Wachter improved one place over their first-run finish.

Svet, the slalom world champion, scored her seventh career victory two weeks after winning at Maribor in her native Slovenia.

Today's sixth giant slalom of the season was a new home-track disappointment for Swiss racers. Three of them, including 1988 World Cup champion Michela Figini, gave up in the first heat after missing the same gate.

Figini has a good chance to catch up in the next races, two super-G runs set for Meribel, France, next weekend.

Maria Walliser, the Olympic giant slalom bronze medalist who announced her upcoming retirement Sunday, finished sixth. Olympic and world champion Vreni Schneider, winner of last season's World Cup, placed seventh.

With nine races remaining, Kronberger leads the overall standings with 258 points. Wachter has 248 and West Germany's Michaela Gerg, 217. Walliser has 174, followed by Schneider and Figini.

Roffe, 11th overall, strengthened her position as best U.S. skier this winter, with Tamara McKinney out with a broken leg suffered in preseason training.

The race marked the comeback of France's Christelle Guignard after a one-year competition ban for using a banned substance.

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