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Hirscher powers to Schladming night slalom win

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Schladming (Austria) (AFP)

Home favourite Marcel Hirscher powered to a dominant victory in Tuesday's night slalom race at Schladming to claim his 10th World Cup win of the season.

The 29-year-old, who already looks all but certain to seal an eighth consecutive overall title this year, has now won 68 World Cup races in his illustrious career.

He will head to next month's world championships in Sweden as a red-hot favourite for the slalom gold medal, after this magnificent display in the final slalom before the start of the event on February 5.

Hirscher laid the foundations for victory with a blistering first run that gave him a 0.99sec advantage heading into his second effort.

Frenchman Alexis Pinturault appeared to have put a little pressure on the two-time Olympic champion, but he responded with another pristine run to win by 1.21sec.

Switzerland's Daniel Yule edged out compatriot Ramon Zenhauesern to complete the podium, a further 0.39sec back.

Hirscher has now reached double digits in World Cup wins for the second straight campaign, having managed 13 in 2017-18.

He also extended his lead in the overall standings to 484 points ahead of Pinturault, who snatched second spot from Henrik Kristoffersen after the Norwegian crashed out.

French youngster Clement Noel, winner of the last two World Cup slalom races, was a surprise early casualty as he skied out on the opening run.

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