Skiing: Tomba runs out of luck

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The Independent Online
TOMAS FOGDOE, of Sweden, scored his second World Cup slalom victory of the season yesterday in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, and spoiled Alberto Tomba's 26th birthday.

The Italian Olympic giant slalom champion did his best to win his first race of the season with a typically storming second run but again his luck ran out and he ended as runner-up for the third time.

Fogdoe clocked an unofficial total time for two runs of 1min 43.20sec, with Tomba on 1:43.48. Germany's Peter Roth, third after the first leg, stayed in that position on 1:43.91.

France's Patrice Bianchi had looked the man most likely to ruin Tomba's day after ending the first leg on the steep and icy Podkoren II piste more than half a second ahead of Fogdoe.

But Bianchi, winner of last Tuesday's slalom in Madonna di Campiglio, Italy, missed the third gate of the 62-gate second run, slewed wide on one ski and went out.

Fogdoe's win was his third World Cup victory and the 22- year-old from Gallivara was also delighted to have emulated his illustrious compatriot Ingemar Stenmark in winning here.

'I didn't believe it. I was sure Tomba would win. There was a lot of pressure on me,' Fogdoe said.

Tomba, who won a slalom here in January, could take a little consolation in stretching his lead in the overall World Cup championship over Luxemburg's Marc Girardelli. Tomba now leads the standings with 336 points to Girardelli's 267 and Fogdoe's 240.

However, the Italian said he was not interested in the Cup and was more concerned with the world championship in Japan in February.

Tomba, winner of three Olympic golds, has never won a world championship title.

WORLD CUP SLALOM (Kranjska Gora, Slovenia): 1 T Fogdoe (Swe) 1min 43.20sec (52.25/50.95); 2 A Tomba (It) 1:43.48 (52.56/50.92); 3 P Roth (Ger) 1:43.91 (52.44/51.47); 4 M Ericson (Swe) 1:44.09 (53.72/50.37); 5 P Staub (Swit) 1:44.13 (52.58/51.55); 6 M Tritscher (Aut) 1:44.53 (52.64/51.89); 7 J Wallner (Swe) 1:44.77 (53.51/51.26); 8 J Kosir (Slov) 1:44.91 (53.46/51.45); 9 D Marksten (Nor) 1:44.94 (53.56/51.38); 10 C Gerosa (It) 1:44.98 (52.82/52.16); 11 T Stangassinger (Aut) 1:45.29 (52.89/52.40); 12 G Grilc (Slov) 1:45.55 (53.73/51.82); 13 M Girardelli (Lux) 1:45.61 (53.43/52.18); 14 O C Furuseth (Nor) 1.45.62 (53.50/52.12); 15 B Gstrein (Aut) 1:45.87 (53.19/52.68). Leading men's slalom World Cup standings (after four races): 1 Fogdoe 240pts; 2 Tomba 196; 3 T Sykora (Aut) 169; 4 P Bianchi (Fr) 140; 5 Tritscher 120; 6 H Strolz (Aut) 120; 7 Staub 119; 8 A Bittner (Ger) 110; 9 F Tescari (It) 106; 10 O Kuenzl (Swit) 105; 11 Gstrein 96; 12 Kosir 89; 13 Roth 76; 14 Girardelli 76; 15 Ericson 72; 16 Stangassinger 72; 17 Gerosa 55; 18 Marksten 55; 19 S Voglreiter (Aut) 53; 20 L Kjus (Nor) 49. Overall World Cup standings (after nine races): 1 Tomba 336pts; 2 Girardelli 267; 3 Fogdoe 240; 4 J E Thorsen (Nor) 197; 5 W Besse (Swit) 180; 6 Sykora 169; 7 L Stock (Aut) 150; 8 Aamodt 148; 9 F Heinzer (Swit) 144; 10 Bianchi 140; 11 Strolz 132; 12 Marksten 132; 13 P Ortlieb (Aut) 131; 14 P Accola (Swit) 128; 15 A Skaardal (Nor) 126; 16 Wallner 122; 17 Tritscher 120; 18 Staub 119; 19 Bittner 110; 20 Tescari 106.

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