Hosp wins super-combi; Schild wins discipline
TARVISIO, Italy -- Nicole Hosp won a super-combi race Friday, Austrian teammate Marlies Schild clinched the World Cup discipline title and American Julia Mancuso moved closer in her bid for the overall title.
Hosp skied one shortened downhill leg and one slalom run in a combined time of 2 minutes, 10.15 seconds on the Prampero course. Mancuso was next, 0.32 seconds behind. Schild was 0.33 back in third, retaining her lead in the overall World Cup standings.
Schild has 1,112 points, Hosp is second with 1,089 and Mancuso trails the leader by 73 points in her attempt to become the first American woman to win the World Cup overall title since Tamara McKinney in 1983. Renate Goetschl is fourth at 1,019 with two more stops left on the World Cup circuit.
There are nine races remaining with a stop next weekend in Zweisel, Germany, before the finals the following week in Lenzerheide, Switzerland.
"I think it's going to be a fight to the end," Mancuso said.
She was second after the downhill and pleasantly surprised with her form in slalom, her weakest discipline.
"I was a little bit scared going into the slalom, but it turned out good," Mancuso said.
Schild wrapped up the season's slalom title last weekend and now holds two crystal globes. This was the third and final super-combi of the season.
"I was very happy with my downhill. I was a little disappointed with my slalom, but I'm happy I won the title," Schild said.
Schild finished with 220 points in the super-combi standings. Mancuso took second with 195 and Hosp third with 190.
Hops won her first super-combi and seventh career World Cup title. She also won gold in giant slalom at the world championships, and took a surprise bronze in downhill.
"The downhill wasn't great, but I took advantage of a good start number in slalom," said Hosp, who was 19th after the downhill leg and had the fastest slalom run.
World champion Anja Paerson, who led after the downhill leg, finished fourth in a race delayed by rain and fog. Warm weather and soft snow conditions made it difficult for the final skiers in the slalom leg to maintain their advantages.
Kathrin Zettel of Austria crashed after struggling to land the final jump in the downhill. She sliced through two layers of safety netting and team officials said she fractured a bone in her left leg.
Goetschl didn't start after injuring both knees in a training crash Thursday. The Austrian still plans to race in Saturday's downhill, when she can clinch the season title.
The super-G is Sunday.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press
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