Vlhova wins home World Cup race, turns tables on Shiffrin

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JASNA, Slovakia (AP) — Slovakian skier Petra Vlhova turned the tables on Mikaela Shiffrin Sunday by winning a women’s World Cup giant slalom, a day after the American had beaten her in the slalom.

Vlhova fell on her back in celebration as soon as first-run leader Shiffrin failed to beat her time.

Vlhova got up and bent over as she fought back tears following the 19th win of her career, but first in a home race on the hill where she regularly trains.

Holding a slim lead from the opening leg, Shiffrin was ready to start her final run when she was made to wait in the start gate for two minutes while course workers replaced a broken gate.

Finally allowed to go, the American posted only the 11th-fastest time and dropped to third, 0.37 behind Vlhova.

Alice Robinson of New Zealand climbed from seventh position to finish runner-up, 0.16 off the lead.

Marta Bassino, who won four giant slaloms this season, locked up the discipline title with a race to spare.

The Italian placed fourth to finish ahead of her only remaining challenger, Tessa Worley of France, who was 10th.

The result gave Bassino a lead of 148 points over Worley with only the season-ending GS at the World Cup Finals in Switzerland remaining.

Bassino became the fourth Italian skier to win the GS globe, after Deborah Compagnoni did it in 1997, Denise Karbon in 2008, and Federica Brignone last year.

World champion Lara Gut-Behrami was out of contention for the win following a costly mistake early in her first run and the Swiss skier finished 1.69 behind in ninth.

In the overall standings, Vlhova closed the gap on leader Gut-Behrami to 36 points, with two slaloms in Sweden coming up on Friday and Saturday.

While slalom is Vlhova’s strongest discipline, Gut-Behrami usually doesn’t compete in skiing’s most technical event.

Shiffrin’s teammate Nina O’Brien was fourth after the opening run but slid away on her inside ski halfway through her final run.

Unheralded Maryna Gasienica-Daniel of Poland, who posted the third-fastest time in the opening run, also failed to finish her second when she hooked a gate with her right arm shortly before the finish.

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