Kristoffersen rallies to lead Norwegian 1-2 at slalom World Cup in Italy

Henrik Kristoffersen had an explosive second run to win a men’s World Cup night slalom on Tuesday, leading Sebastian Foss-Solevaag for a Norwegian 1-2 finish.

In the traditional last race before Christmas on the floodlit Canalone Miramonti course, Kristoffersen was 1.25 seconds behind in 12th after the first run but charged ahead in the second to beat first-run leader Foss-Solevaag by 0.33.

Alex Vinatzer of Italy was 0.34 behind in third, edging Austria’s Manuel Feller by one-hundredth.

The result meant that Norway has won three of the five races held in the Italian Alps over the past five days, after Aleksander Aamodt Kilde triumphed in two speed races in Val Gardena on Friday and Saturday.

Overall World Cup leader Alexis Pinturault was part of a three-way tie for sixth place, with Linus Strasser and two-time world champion Jean-Baptiste Grange.

Ramon Zenhaeusern, who won a slalom in Alta Badia on Monday, finished eight-tenths off the lead in 13th.

Kristoffer Jakobsen of Sweden posted the fastest second-run time for a second straight day, and finished 10th.

Kristoffersen’s first triumph of the season marked his 18th World Cup slalom win and 22nd overall.

The World Cup slalom champion is now in outright third place on the Norwegian winners’ list, overtaking Kjetil Andre Aamodt and trailing only Aksel Lund Svindal, who had 36 wins before retiring in 2019, and Kjetil Jansrud, with 23.

Chasing his first career win, Foss-Solevaag took a big lead of four-tenths in the opening run, with a flawless run in the steep middle section, before carrying his speed through the finish.

Many of his rivals struggled on the relatively soft snow surface due to the mild temperatures in the Italian Alps.

Foss-Solevaag is among the most consistent performers in the slalom discipline. He finished in the top 10 in eight of the nine slaloms last seasons, more than any other competitor.

However, he has gathered just two podium results so far, most recently in St. Moritz, Switzerland, in March 2016.

He was also part of the Norwegian team that won bronze in the Olympic team event in Pyeongchang in 2018.

The men’s World Cup continues with the classic downhill in Bormio next Monday.