Felix Neureuther of Germany speeds down the course during the men's slalom for the finals of the Alpine skiing World Cup in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, Sunday,March.17,2013.(AP Photo/Shinichiro Tanaka)
Sunday, March 17, 2013 7:53 am
Felix Neureuther wins final World Cup slalom
By GRAHAM DUNBARAP Sports Writer
Neureuther hung on to his opening-leg lead to finish 0.36 seconds ahead of Austrian Hirscher in a two-run time of 1 minute, 52.20 seconds.
Hirscher already won the season-long slalom standings and ensured he finished on the podium in all nine World Cup races in the discipline.
"I'm happy with the whole season," said the 24-year-old Hirscher, who matched Alberto Tomba's record of top-3 finishes in a nine-race slalom program. The Italian great achieved it in the 1991-92 World Cup season.
Hirscher's dominating season in slalom included the world championships gold medal last month in Schladming, Austria.
Ivica Kostelic, the 2011 overall World Cup champion from Croatia, was third Sunday, trailing Neureuther by 0.51.
Neureuther, who limped off the course after crashing out in Saturday's giant slalom, got his second slalom victory of the season and finished second in the standings.
The podium placings were the same when Neureuther won in January at Wengen, Switzerland.
Hirscher added 80 World Cup points to complete his season with 1,535 overall. He had 180 more when he won the giant crystal globe trophy for the first time last season.
Aksel Lund Svindal of Norway, who skips slalom races, finished second with 1,226.
Ted Ligety of the United States placed third with a career-best total of 1,022.
The 28-year-old giant slalom specialist skied out midway through the first slalom run, one day after winning his sixth World Cup race this season.
"It's the story of my slalom season," said Ligety, who has targeted improved results in the most technical discipline to challenge Hirscher next year.
American teammate David Chodounsky also skied out as only 18 of 26 starters completed the first leg on a tricky snow surface.
The World Cup season ends with a women's giant slalom being completed later Sunday.