Overall, Paerson is looking good for title
LENZERHEIDE, Switzerland – Janica Kostelic all but conceded the overall World Cup title to Anja Paerson.Paerson finished third in Friday’s super giant slalom and opened an 89-point lead on the Croat with only two races remaining – Saturday’s slalom and Sunday’s giant slalom. Wins are worth 100 points.Michaela Dorfmeister of Austria won the final super-G to claim the World Cup title in the discipline.”I had a chance to do better today,” said Kostelic, who finished 15th, the last place that earns points at the finals. “I had a chance at the title. I was better in the season, but my last two races – downhill and super-G – I didn’t ski well. I was lucky to even get points today.”
Paerson leads Kostelic 1,333 points to 1,244.In Thursday’s downhill, Kostelic finished fourth and Paerson eighth.”All I can do is my best. I’m giving my best and she’s giving hers. What else can you do?” said Kostelic, who already has won the overall title twice.While Kostelic and Paerson have performed evenly in slalom this season, the Swede holds a significant edge in GS and leads the season standings in the event.
Paerson, who won last season’s overall while Kostelic was out with illness and injuries, started after her rival Friday.”I was extremely nervous at the start, and when I heard Kostelic didn’t ski well I got even more nervous,” she said. “It’s great to extend my lead over her.”Last year, Paerson won the overall on the basis of her 11 wins in the technical events of slalom and GS. This season, having developed into an all-around skier, she has only four victories – one in every discipline – but has performed well across the board.”Last year I wanted to win a lot of GS and slaloms. This year I had to give myself other challenges,” Paerson said. “It was my dream when I was young to win in all events. I’m steadily going forward. I won in all four (events) this year and I didn’t expect it. I’m living a dream right now.”Dorfmeister, the 2001-02 overall winner, added to her giant slalom trophy from 1999-00 and the downhill crown she won in 2003.
She was the last skier on the course and needed only a ninth-place result once countrywoman Renate Goetschl, who skied immediately before her, finished outside the top three.Dorfmeister took nothing for granted, however, winning in emphatic fashion in 1 minute, 12.38 seconds. She was 0.30 seconds ahead of another Austrian, Marlies Schild. Lindsey Kildow of the United States was fourth.”My big goal was the super-G globe,” Dorfmeister said. “The race conditions for the last (starters) had become very difficult. But it made it exciting for everyone, and that is why I’m so proud of this win because it was tough to win today.”The victory was Dorfmeister’s third in the super-G this season. She also won the season opener in Lake Louise, Alberta, in December and a race last month in Are, Sweden.
Dorfmeister finished with 493 super-G points while Goetschl, who won the downhill race and season title Thursday, finished with 416 after coming in fifth Friday. Kildow wound up third in the super-G standings with 396 points.”I’m really happy,” Kildow said. “Third isn’t bad, but I know I could have won. But shoulda, coulda, woulda. And third is good.”Vail, Colorado