Kristoffersen leads slalom, Hirscher close to overall title

KRANJSKA GORA, Slovenia (AP) — Henrik Kristoffersen built a big lead in the opening run of a men’s World Cup slalom on Sunday, a day after he won a giant slalom on the same hill.

On a weakened course after days of mild temperatures and rain, the Norwegian led Manfred Moelgg of Italy by 0.57 seconds and Alexis Pinturault of France by 0.62.

Kristoffersen has won 15 slaloms in his career but none since triumphing in Kitzbuehel in January 2018.

Marcel Hirscher, who has won 12 of the last 16 World Cup slaloms and locked up the season title in the discipline weeks ago, trailed by more than eight-tenths in sixth.

The Austrian will mathematically secure his eighth consecutive overall championship if he leads second-place Pinturault by at least 400 points after the race. Currently Hirscher is 485 points ahead of the Frenchman.

Clinching his eighth overall title is a formality for Hirscher as Pinturault is unlikely to start in Wednesday’s downhill at the World Cup Finals in Andorra, one of the four remaining races this season.

By winning the big crystal globe again, Hirscher would match the World Cup record of 20 overall and discipline titles set by Lindsey Vonn.

BAssociated Press