Swedish skier Hector leads GS after 1st run; Shiffrin in 3rd

COURCHEVEL, France (AP) — Swedish skier Sara Hector posted the fastest time in the opening run of a women’s World Cup giant slalom on Wednesday.

Hector led Tessa Worley of France by .11 seconds, followed by overall World Cup leader Mikaela Shiffrin in third with .34 to make up in the second run.

Hector finished runner-up to Shiffrin in Tuesday’s GS on the same hill for her first podium result in a year. The Swede won her sole World Cup race in Austria seven years ago.

Shiffrin led Hector for the first two splits but the Olympic champion lost pace when she came wide in a couple of turns and had to adapt her race line.

“I misjudged some of the turns in the middle section. I lost my outside ski a bit,” said Shiffrin, calling the course surface “a little bit slick, or a little icy.”

The American’s main challenger in the overall standings, Sofia Goggia, failed to score World Cup points for a second straight day.

The Italian slid off the course after she lost her balance in a left turn halfway through her run. Goggia also skied out in the second leg of Tuesday’s race.

Marta Bassino, an Italian teammate of Goggia, was .39 back in fourth, and defending overall champion Petra Vlhova was nearly six-tenths behind Hector in fifth.

With seven racers finishing less than a second off the lead, the race is much tighter than Tuesday’s, when only one skier — Switzerland’s Michelle Gisin — came within one second of Shiffrin’s leading time.

World champion Lara Gut-Behrami, slalom World Cup winner Katharina Liensberger, and Alice Robinson sat out the event following positive COVID-19 tests.

The race replaced the GS that was canceled in Killington, Vermont, in November because of strong winds.

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More AP skiing: https://apnews.com/hub/skiing and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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