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American Bode Miller Wins 1st World Cup Slalom Event in 2 Years - 2004-02-15

American Bode Miller skied two blazing runs in Saint Anton, Austria, to win his first World Cup slalom in two years and climb into third place in the overall standings.

Miller took a comfortable lead in the opening leg Sunday, then completed the second run for a combined time of one minute and 34.60 seconds.

That was almost a full second faster than second-place finisher Kalle Palander of Finland (1:35.55). Palander is the defending World Cup champion in the discipline and winner of three slaloms this season. Austria's Mario Matt finished third (1:35.69).

Miller's previous slalom victory dates back to January 2002 in Schladming, Austria. He has had two slalom podium finishes this season, and also won two giant slalom races. With the victory, Miller moved into third place in the overall standings with 984 points. He is one point behind Benjamin Raich, while fellow Austrian Hermann Maier leads with 1,054 points.

Finnish skier Hannu Manninen has captured his sixth Nordic combined World Cup event of the season, extending his lead in the overall standings in Oberstdorf, Germany. Manninen was in 13th place after the ski-jumping portion of Sunday's event. But he edged Japan's Daito Takahashi by just over one second in clocking the fastest time in the concluding 7.5 kilometer cross country sprint. American Todd Lodwick was third.

Some information for this report provided by AP and AFP.

The victory increased Manninen's lead in the overall standings to 235 points over Germany's Ronny Ackermann, who finished sixth. With six races left, Manninen has 1,070 points to Ackermann's 835. Lodwick is fifth at 573.