Mikaela Shiffrin pads World Cup overall lead in GS won by Tessa Worley

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LENZERHEIDE, Switzerland — Mikaela Shiffrin stretched her lead in the overall World Cup standings Sunday by finishing fourth in a giant slalom after closest rival Petra Vlhová failed to finish the first run.

Shiffrin seemed to ski more cautiously in the second run, after being second-fastest in the first leg, and ended 0.77 seconds behind the winner Tessa Worley.

Worley, a two-time world champion, finished 0.29 ahead of Federica Brignone. Olympic champion Sara Hector let her first-run lead slip to finish 0.31 behind Worley.

Alpine World Cup: Full Results

If Shiffrin was skiing to protect her lead in a season-long duel with Vlhová, the updated standings show the tactic worked in a successful weekend at Lenzerheide.

Shiffrin earned 50 points for Sunday’s race — her first giant slalom since crashing out after just 10 seconds at the Beijing Olympics — and built her lead to 117 with six events left in the next two weeks.

Shiffrin and Vlhová had been tied before the two-race meeting at the Swiss resort watched course-side by tennis great Roger Federer, who has a home within sight of the race hill.

Worley’s 16th career World Cup win, all in giant slalom, closed the gap in the discipline standings which are led by Hector with two races left.

The women’s World Cup circuit now moves to Hector’s home country Sweden for a giant slalom and slalom next weekend at Are. The season finishes at World Cup finals week in the neighboring French resorts of Courchevel and Meribel.

Shiffrin is seeking a fourth career overall World Cup title and Vlhova is defending her first title won last season.

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Lucas Braathen, world’s top male slalom skier, in doubt for world championships

Lucas Braathen
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Norway’s Lucas Braathen, the world’s top male slalom skier this season, is doubtful to compete in the world championships slalom on Feb. 19 after appendix surgery on Tuesday.

“It’s been a tough couple of days fighting after surprisingly finding out about quite an intense infection on my appendix,” Braathen, a 22-year-old soccer convert with a Brazilian mom, posted on social media. “I’ve been through surgery and I’m blessed that it went successfully.”

The Norway Alpine skiing team doctor said Braathen’s recovery will take a few weeks, but there is a small possibility he can make it back for the world championships slalom, which is on the final day of the two-week competition.

Braathen has two slalom wins and one giant slalom win this World Cup season. He will miss Saturday’s slalom in Chamonix, France, the last race before worlds. Countryman Henrik Kristoffersen and Swiss Daniel Yule can overtake him atop the World Cup slalom standings in Chamonix.

Braathen entered last year’s Olympics as the World Cup slalom leader and skied out in the first run at the Games.

ALPINE SKIING WORLDS: Broadcast Schedule

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Sifan Hassan sets marathon debut

Sifan Hassan
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Sifan Hassan, who won 5000m and 10,000m gold and 1500m bronze at the Tokyo Olympics in an unprecedented triple, will make her 26.2-mile debut at the London Marathon on April 23.

Hassan, a 30-year-old Dutchwoman, said she will return to the track after the race, but how the London Marathon goes will play into whether she bids for the Olympic marathon in 2024.

“I want to see what I can do on the marathon distance, to make future decisions,” she posted on social media. “We’ll see if I will finish the distance or if the distance will finish me.”

Exhausted by her Olympic feat, Hassan reportedly went at least seven months after the Tokyo Games between training in track spikes. She finished fourth in the 10,000m and sixth in the 5000m at last July’s world championships in Eugene, Oregon.

“I really needed a break after the Tokyo Olympics,” Hassan said at worlds. “I was mentally crashed. I didn’t even care about running.”

London, billed as the best women’s marathon field in history, also boasts Olympic champion Peres Jepchirchir of Kenya, world record holder Brigid Kosgei of Kenya, 2016 Olympic 10,000m champion Almaz Ayana of Ethiopia, 1500m world record holder Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia and the two fastest Americans in history, Emily Sisson and Keira D’Amato.

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