American Tommy Ford flown to hospital after serious crash in giant slalom race

American skier Tommy Ford was airlifted to hospital after crashing during a World Cup giant slalom on Saturday.

Ford crashed three gates from the finish after going wide in the choppy snow beside the course. His skis touched and he fell forward, sliding first over the back of the neck and left shoulder.

The United States Ski Team later said that “Ford’s head and neck injuries are minor and going well. He has a knee injury which is undergoing further evaluation ”.

Ford ran over a worker on the side of the course before stopping near the safety nets next to the finish. Initially he lay still, his face against the snow, but was soon conscious and chatted with the medical staff.

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Tommy Ford of the United States crashed near the finish line of the first round of the giant slalom race on Saturday in Adelboden, Switzerland and was airlifted to a local hospital. 2:48

A helicopter touched down on the course 20 minutes later to airlift the 31-year-old pilot from Bend, Oregon.

Ford earned a giant slalom victory and two more podiums in 12 seasons on the World Cup circuit. He wore bib No.4 on Saturday as one of the best runners after finishing in the top 10 in his last four starts.

Ford’s next giant slalom is in six weeks – February 19 at the world championships in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy.

Tie for 9th place on all-time winning list

The race resumed after a 30-minute break and Alexis Pinturault won for a second straight day, surpassing his superb performance on Friday.

Pinturault challenged the rapidly fading light in the second set to post a huge 1.26 second margin of victory over Filip Zubcic, the runner-up on consecutive days.

WATCH | Alex Pinturault clinches 33rd victory on the World Cup circuit:

After a win yesterday, Frenchman Alexis Pinturault claimed his second World Cup giant slalom victory on Saturday in Adelboden, Switzerland, crossing the finish line with a two-run time of 2: 18.36. 2:04

The leader of the first round Loic Meillard could not give Switzerland its first victory since 2008 in its classic giant slalom. A big mistake at the start of his race left him 1.65 in third place.

Erik Read of Calgary was 13th of 29 finalists with a two-run time of 2: 21.01, 2.65 seconds behind Pinturault (2: 18.36).

Pinturault’s third straight giant slalom victory was a 33rd career victory in World Cup races, tying American great Bode Miller for ninth on the men’s all-time list.

“I’m pretty proud of it,” said Pinturault, whose ski technician Guntram Mathis worked with Miller. “It brings something really special to the story. ”

Pinturault took the lead in the giant slalom season standings against local favorite Marco Odermatt, who placed fourth, 1.67 behind.

The Frenchman also extended his lead in the World Cup points race ahead of defending champion Aleksander Aamodt Kilde. Kilde’s results – fifth place, after fourth on Friday – were impressive for the sprint specialist.

Pinturault’s end-to-end victory on Friday had also been over a second, although he noted the light was more difficult on Saturday. In Adelboden, the slope darkens quickly after the sun creeps behind the mountains around 2pm when the leaders enter their second run.

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