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Beaver Creek: Rocca wins, USA's Ligety career-best third in slalom

Beaver Creek: Rocca wins, USA’s Ligety career-best third in slalom{mosimage}BEAVER CREEK – Giorgio Rocca of Italy won a World Cup slalom race Sunday to wrap up four wild days of ski racing at the Visa Birds of Prey series in Colorado.

It was a day of massive attrition in the opening FIS slalom of the season. Twenty-eight skiers did not finish the first run, a tight course set in cold temperatures but mostly clear skies. But snow was falling heavily in the second run, and eight of the 30 second-run qualifiers did not finish, including Austrian Benni Raich. Raich, the leader after one run, seemed poised to claim victory before missing a gate just seconds from the finish.

Rocca was first in a two-run time of 1 minute, 51.72 seconds with France’s Stephane Tissot second in 1:52.58. American Ted Ligety vaulted from 12th after the first run to finish on the podium in third, his first career World Cup podium. His previous best was eighth in a Soelden GS in October.

American Bode Miller missed a gate in the first run, hiked to complete the gate but did not qualify for second run.

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