Portugal Colonial - First blood to Jakobsen in Schladming as Pinturault drops out again

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First blood to Jakobsen in Schladming as Pinturault drops out again
First blood to Jakobsen in Schladming as Pinturault drops out again

First blood to Jakobsen in Schladming as Pinturault drops out again

Swedish skier Kristoffer Jakobsen dominated the first round of the World Cup slalom in Schladming on Tuesday, the last race before the Beijing Olympics.

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Alexis Pinturault's preparations for the Games, however, suffered a further setback when the Frenchman once again failed to complete his run.

It was the fourth time in six slaloms this winter that he has dropped out.

The 2021 overall World Cup champion, who is looking to win his first individual gold medal at the Beijing Olympics, also dropped out in Kitzbuehel on Sunday.

"Each time I arrive in a new race, I change my state of mind, but the results are not better for all that and feed this hell," Pinturault said in the mixed zone after his failed run.

"The situation is far from easy. After a while there are doubts and doubt is the enemy of the athlete.

"Without confidence I feel less liberated when I ski, I am less able to take risks."

The 30-year-old, however, struck a note of optimism as he looked ahead to Beijing.

"At the Games it can't be worse than what I'm doing right now. The Games are a different universe, where there are surprises.

"Anyone can try their luck, feel comfortable, and be on the podium."

Jakobsen was 0.58secs quicker than the Italian Giuliano Razzoli.

Frenchman Clement Noel and Norwegian Lucas Braathen, winner of the Wengen slalom 10 days ago and second in Kitzbuehel on Saturday, are tied third, 0.67secs behind the leader.

Round two is scheduled for 1945GMT.

The Winter Olympics in Beijing begin on February 4.

V.F.Barreira--PC