Daily Updates — Live from Nagano

Women's Giant Slalom
Report by Martin Bell

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Compagnoni Won't Settle for Second
Friday, Feb. 20, 1998
Shiga Kogen, Japan

Deborah Compagnoni Takes Giant Slalom Gold and Makes History

Deborah Compagnoni Medals aren't new for Compagnoni
A day after she lost gold by an infinitesimal margin, Italy's Deborah Compagnoni refused to settle for second and won gold in the women's giant slalom and a place in the history books as the only alpine skier to win gold medals in three consecutive Olympics.

Compagnoni bombed the icy course in her favorite discipline to also take her third medal in five days. Her tight maneuvering and absolute control over the course gave her a comfortable buffer after just the first run when she led her field of competitors by a full second.

And Compagnoni sealed her golden fate after the second run when she increased her two-run lead by another eight tenths. She earned her top podium spot with a combined time of 2:50.59.

After the first run, it wasn't necessarily unlike yesterday's race when Compagnoni also led the pack by what seemed an unbeatable time. But, in a mere six one-hundredths of a second, Compagnoni was reduced to silver as Hilde Gerg proved that every millisecond counts in alpine ski racing.

Katja Seizinger Katja "3 Golds and a Bronze" Seizinger
Austria's Alexandra Meissnitzer, in a feat of her own, took the silver over Germany's Katja Seizinger, who's had a good run in these Games, taking home gold in both the downhill and combined. Meissnitzer, who won the bronze in this week's Super G, earned her silver spot in 2:52.39 with Seizinger third in 2:52.61.

Compagnoni also won this race in the Lillehammer Games and, in 1992, won Super G gold in Albertville.

American Julie Parisien who returned to the US Ski Team this season after a turning pro, had the best US finish in 3:02.78. The three other US competitors did not finish.


1 Deborah Compagnoni Italy 2:50.59
2 Alexandra Meissnitzer Austria 2:52.39
3 Katja Seizinger Germany 2:52.61
4 Martina Ertl Germany 2:52.72
5 Sophie Lefranc France 2:53.27
6 Heidi Zurbriggen Switzerland 2:53.61
7 Anna Ottosson Sweden 2:53.81
8 Sabina Panzanini Italy 2:54.09
9 Birgit Heeb Liechtenstein 2:54.70
10 Andrine Flemmen Norway 2:54.94
11 Pernilla Wiberg Sweden 2:55.40
12 Maria Jose Rienda Contreras Spain 2:55.54
13 Hilde Gerg Germany 2:55.89
14 Martina Fortkord Sweden 2:56.35
15 Stefanie Schuster Austria 2:56.41
16 Karin Roten Switzerland 2:56.96
17 Alenka Dovzan Slovenia 2:57.35
18 Urska Hrovat Slovenia 2:57.44
19 Catherine Borghi Switzerland 2:58.42
20 Natasa Bokal Slovenia 2:58.46
20 Christiane Mitterwallner Austria 2:58.46
22 Kristine Kristiansen Norway 2:58.71
23 Karen Putzer Italy 2:59.04
24 Janica Kostelic Croatia 2:59.39
25 Kazuko Ikeda Japan 3:00.71
26 Tanja Poutiainen Finland 3:01.66
27 Kumiko Kashiwagi Japan 3:01.91
28 Julie M.J. Parisien United States 3:02.78
29 Junko Yamakawa Japan 3:03.95
30 Regina Haeusl Germany 3:04.57
31 Ilze Abola Latvia 3:14.50
32 Monika Kovacs Hungary 3:15.56
33 Jana Nikolovska Macedonia 3:29.97
34 Sofia Mistrioti Greece 3:32.20
Sarah Schleper United States DNF
Alexandra Shaffer United States DNF

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