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23/11/2017 - 23:28
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FIS Ski Federation

Croatian Olympic Comittee
Bormio (ITA), 04.02.2005.
Janica Kostelic kept the lead
Janica Kostelic was able to successfully defend her leader in the overall combined standings before the third and last leg of the day. She lost 29/100 of a second on Anja Paerson who achieved a very aggressive run yet she retained the command with a lead of 37/100 on the triple World Champion.

USA's Lindsey Kildow, 3rd in the downhill part, remained 3rd after that first slalom run despite a crash in the finales gates - but with a delay of 1,63 seconds on the leader. Her advance on Austria's Marlies Schild melted to 53/100 of a second.

Renate Goetschl skied out and Elisabeth Goergl is 5th at 2,23 seconds.

"There are some stones on the upper part of the course, but beside this everything went on fine, I charged from the first to the last gate," said Paerson. "It was intense and the battle will last until the gate of the second run." She was also happy to put some pressure on Janica who has no room for error later on this evening.

As Kostelic went by, the two rivals congratulated each other - they seemed
to enjoy this exciting fight for supremacy. Janica skied as fast as Anja in the upper part of the course, but lost part of her advance at the bottom.

The defending combined champion also said she skied as well as possible. She will be the
last skier of the group of favorites to start in the final leg - a situation she already faced with great success in recent years, no later than two years ago in St Moritz where Marlies Schild and Nicole Hosp put great pressure on her during the entire event.

Marica Kostelic, Janica's mom, followed the race from an angle of the finish line. Her heart was beating hard during Janica's race. "She seems to be happy and to have a good time, this is the most important for us," Marica said. "The most important for all of us is that she is healthy and enjoying what she is
doing."

The battle for bronze will also be intense - five skiers are classified within the same second behind Kostelic and Paerson. Kildow will need a super run to keep out of reach of her Austrian rivals. She lost a few tenths of a second in crossing the finish line on her side after losing her balance in the last gates. But
she had a big smile on her face afterwards. "I attack hard and my skis were almost too fast for me at the end," she said.

"I lost too much time on the downhill so I had
to take more risks. But it's a good race for my confidence, it will help me to recover my momentum after my tough crash in training the other day."

Also among the spectators, Italy's superstar Alberto Tomba, who celebrated one of his greatest triumphs here in March 1995 when he clinched his only Overall World Cup title after winning eleven competitions. "This is really nice, the girls ski really well," he said. "I'm very happy also that Giorgio Rocca got the bronze yesterday. He is very strong and I'll root for him next week."

PL
Ivica Kostelic official website
Croatian ski team official website
Vip Snow Queen Trophy
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