France's Pinturault slaloms to world combined gold

Alexis Pinturault claimed his first world title with victory in the men's alpine combined

France's Alexis Pinturault laid down a fantastic slalom run to win the world alpine combined event on Monday, his first global title.

Pinturault, who claimed Olympic combined silver last year, left himself with it all to do in the slalom having only managed to finish 24th in the downhill, 1.52sec behind Italian leader Dominik Paris.

The 27-year-old held his nerve on a floodlit Olympia course to race down with a combined time of 1min 47.71sec.

Slovenia's Stefan Hadalin, who only scraped into the top 30, in 30th spot, by four-hundredths, claimed an impressive silver, 0.24sec off Pinturault.

The Slovene, whose best showing in six seasons on the World Cup circuit is an eighth place in the Saalbach slalom in December, clocked the fastest slalom run of the day, 0.12sec ahead of Pinturault. Austrian Marco Schwarz took bronze (+0.46).

After nailing an impressive slalom, Pinturault then faced a nervy wait in the leader's chair watching the 23 racers in front of him tackle the course.

His French teammate Victor Muffat-Jeandet, who won bronze in Pyeongchang and finished just ahead of him in the downhill, made a mistake in the slalom that saw him come in sixth overall, 0.81sec off the pace.

- Schwarz in the snow -

There was then snowfall for the next 10 competitors, starting with Schwarz, installed as a firm favourite having won last month's combined in Wengen.

It was not to be for the Austrian, however, losing speed, as many racers did, in a flatter transitional section to the final drop into the finish area.

Defending world combined champion Luca Aerni of Switzerland, also well placed for attack after the downhill, similarly faltered to lose time, coming in eighth behind teammate and world bronze medallist Mauro Caviezel.

Italian Riccardo Tonetti and Germany's Linus Strasser both briefly threatened before fading, eventually finishing fourth and fifth.

Tonetti's teammate Christof Innerhofer, 2014 Olympic combined bronze medallist, skied out whilst leading at the second intermediary, before Paris took to the start hut.

Paris, joint fourth in the 2017 world combined, had stormed to an impressive super-G victory in Are last week and again impressed on the Olympia course in the downhill.

But his lack of time on the shorter slalom skis quickly showed up under floodlights and by halfway of his laboured descent, Pinturault knew he had sealed gold.

The 29-year-old Paris' last competitive stand-alone slalom dates back to Kitzbuehel in 2013, in which he failed to finish the first run.

He also bombed out of the slalom in the Wengen combined and also at the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, but in Are at least managed to finish, albeit 1.51sec slower than Pinturault in a gutsy showing.

American Ted Ligety, 2013 combined champion and 2006 Olympic gold medallist in the discipline, had a shocker in the speed event, coming in 42nd at 2.57sec, a deficit so big he didn't even bother gracing the technical event.