Sweden’s Myhrer clocks fastest time in Finland

AP, LEVI, Finland

Mon, Nov 12, 2012 - Page 20

Andre Myhrer of Sweden clocked the fastest time in the first run of a men’s World Cup slalom yesterday, taking a narrow lead over defending overall champion Marcel Hirscher.

The 29-year old defending World Cup slalom champion finished in 53.86 seconds in mild conditions featuring light fog, 0.27 seconds ahead of the Austrian.

Myhrer, who has four World Cup slalom wins in his career and came second on the Levi black piste behind Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Grange in 2010, called it “a good run.”

“It wasn’t that easy, the snow was posing some problems, but I feel I’m getting a good flow when I’m racing anyway,” he said.

Hirscher, who is currently third in the overall standings after the season opener in Soelden, Austria, two weeks ago, said he was looking forward to pushing a little harder on his second run to try to overtake the leader.

“It’s possible, for sure,” Hirscher said.

Jens Byggmark of Sweden was third, finishing 0.31 seconds behind his compatriot.

Byggmark said that on his second run he would try to keep the same mindset he had on the first.

“To ski like in training. To attack in the same way so that you don’t shy away [just] because it’s a race,” Byggmark said.

The US’ Ted Ligety, who won the giant slalom World Cup race in Soelden by the biggest winning margin since 1979, held a share of 21st place with Finland’s Santeri Paloniemi, 1 minute and 27 seconds behind the leader.

Levi — about 170km north of the Arctic Circle — is the world’s northernmost World Cup venue.Last year, the scheduled circuit races were canceled here because of a lack of snow.