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Mattias Hargin leads 1st run of World Cup slalom

Associated Press
Felix Neureuther of Germany celebrates in the finish area after winning an alpine ski, men's World Cup giant slalom in Adelboden, Switzerland, Saturday, Jan. 11, 2014. Felix Neureuther overcame a big first-run deficit to win a World Cup giant slalom on Saturday for his second straight victory in 2014. (AP Photo/Giovanni Auletta)

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Felix Neureuther of Germany celebrates in the finish area after winning an alpine ski, men's World …

ADELBODEN, Switzerland (AP) — Felix Neureuther of Germany is in contention for a weekend World Cup double, posting the second-fastest time in the first run of Sunday's slalom.

Neureuther, who won the classic giant slalom Saturday, trailed by 0.39 seconds behind the 51.80 leading time clocked by Mattias Hargin of Sweden.

Marcel Hirscher of Austria was third, with 0.47 to make up in the second run. Hirscher, the defending overall World Cup champion, can lead the standings by finishing second.

On another sunny day with temperatures rising above 43 F (6 C), top-ranked early racers had the best conditions before the snow surface rutted.

"It's a tough hill, but it's pretty nice for the good numbers," said Hargin, who wore bib No. 2 though will be the latest of 30 starters in the afternoon. "It's a challenge I have to try to handle."

The 28-year-old Swede got a career-best World Cup result of runner-up last month in slalom at Val d'Isere, France.

Still, Neureuther is unbeaten in 2014 having also won the slalom last Monday at Bormio, Italy.

Ted Ligety of the United States, who is third overall, started No. 17 and was 20th fastest, trailing Hargin by 2.30.

"It's on par for how I've been skiing in slalom. It is what it is," said Ligety, whose last podium finish in the discipline was six years ago.

Bode Miller placed outside the top-30 that qualify for a second run.

The American veteran, who won this race in 2002, lost his race line and speed at the top of the final pitch.

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