up and though it did get slick in some turns, other turns filled with slush that pushed to piles, forming
ruts the shovels couldn’t move fast enough to clear. Later starters really had little chance, which underscores the brilliance of Jimmy Cochran’s run, climbing to 20th from the 41st start.
Generally speaking, though, the run was not — as a colleague said — a pleasure to the eye. Nor to
ski. Of 94 starters (expanded because of the combined), 24 had failed to finish and three more were
disqualified. It was apparent that the winner was coming from the those top four skiers.
The rain let up, but that allowed the fog to rise thicker for the culminating run. Deville had been first or
second after the first runs in four of the six previous slaloms this season and was burning for a strong
second run. He got it, looking smooth down a course no other skiers had looked good on. He would
say afterward he had taken plenty of risk but it looked like he was taking a pleasure run on a spring
Hirscher, reprieved by the jury, was careful with the first gate, but knew he would have to charge if he
were to beat Deville. He got in trouble and replied with huge recoveries in mid-course, and looked fast
through the toughest part of the course set. And then it happened. He straddled toward the end of the
run, a straddle too undeniable to be missed by the cameras.
Kostelic’s run was a marvel of balance. He committed at least three errors that flung him into the
porridge-like snow at the edge of the course, at one point dragging a hand and seemingly most of his
body along the surface. On this day he would not overtake Mr. Deville.
Matt fought his way down, trying for all he was worth to generate speed and instead lost a little more
with each effort.
It was the first career win for the 31-year-old Deville, making him just the third Italian in the 72-year
history of the Hahnenkamm to win the slalom (joining Piero Gros and Alberto Tomba). The man bubbled with joy.
Combined, Jan. 22
The slalom may have been over, but the race was not. Sixteen more men, with an eye on the combined trophy, had yet to take their second slalom run. The win was decided — Kostelic would take
the stunning Hahnenkamm trophy, designed by artist Florian Schluifer. But there were plenty of
points and no small amount of prize money to be decided.
Those who would finish closest behind Kostelic for the combined all started among that last group of
16. Beat Feuz wound up second, Silvan Zurbriggen third, Adrien Theaux fourth, Ted Ligety fifth; and
Romed Bauman, Kjetil Jansrud and Christof Innerhofer sixth, seventh and eighth, respectively.
The win gave Kostelic a platform, and he was not shy about speaking his mind. Hirscher’s show in
Zagreb was foremost in his mind. A skier cannot straddle and not know it, he said.
“Sport means something,” he told FISalpine.com. “It has basic values. ... When these basic values
are walked over, I, personally, don’t forget these. It’s a pretty unclean picture.”
Bode Miller was
happy to survive
the run “with
The Croatian fans were in
form for the slalom.