Luitz halts Hirscher’s giant slalom winning run in Beaver Creek

Courtesy of Red Bull Media Service Team

German takes maiden win with a second place for the Austrian star.

German Stefan Luitz earned his maiden FIS World Cup victory nearly a year after a serious knee injury in Alta Badia to prevent Marcel Hirscher from clinching his 60th World Cup win.

Swiss Thomas Tumler skied an amazing second run to snatch third place, by far his best World Cup result. Here is all you need to know:

Stefan Luitz clocked 2:36.38 to beat Marcel Hirscher by 0.14 seconds and Thomas Tumler by 0.51.

– Hirscher had won six of seven giant slaloms held last season and nine of the last 10 World Cup races in the discipline. He won the Beaver Creek GS three times in 2011, 2015 and last year.

– His second place today was his 16th World Cup giant slalom podium in succession.

– Beaver Creek is the resort in which the seven times overall World Cup champion earned his only super-G victory in 2015.

– It was the first men’s giant slalom of the season after the Soelden opener in October was cancelled because of bad weather conditions.

Stefan Luitz had six top three finishes before today’s race. He tore a knee ligament on December 17, 2017, in Alta Badia and missed the whole of last season.

– Norway’s Henrik Kristoffersen, second behind Hirscher in the first slalom of the season in Levi last month, finished 4th and missed the podium by 0.16 seconds.

– The last time Hirscher failed to win a World Cup giant slalom was a year ago in Val d’Isere, when he was beaten into third place by Luitz and France’s Alexis Pinturault, who had to settle for 14thin Beaver Creek on a snow he never really adjusted to.

– Val d’Isere hosts a giant slalom and a slalom next weekend as the men’s circuit returns to Europe.

– Third-placed Thomas Tumler’s best World Cup result to date was 8thin a Super-G in 2016. His best giant slalom result was 26th! His 3rdplace was the first podium placing by a Swiss in the men’s World Cup since 2011.

Top 10 race results
1. Stefan Luitz (Germany) 2:26.38
2. Marcel Hirscher (Austria) 0.14 behind
3. Thomas Tumler (Switzerland) 0.51
4. Henrik Kristoffersen (Norway) 0.67
5. Loic Meillard (Switzerland) 0.84
6. Matts Olson (Sweden) 0.90
7. Mathieu Faivre (France) 0.91
8= Riccardo Tonetti (Italy) 1:10
8= Ted Ligety (U.S.) 1:10
10. Victor Muffat-Jeandet (France) 1:12

Top 10 overall FIS World Cup standings
1. Max Franz (Austria) 238 points
2. Mauro Caviezel (Switzerland) 227
3. Vincent Kriechmayr (Austria) 211
4. Aksel Lund Svindal (Norway) 197
5. Marcel Hirscher (Austria) 180
6. Beat Feuz (Switzerland) 178
7. Kjetil Jansrud (Norway) 163
8. Dominik Paris (Italy) 152
9. Henrik Kristoffersen (Norway) 130
10. Matthias Mayer (Austria) 120


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