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Tessa Worley of France competes during the women's alpine skiing World Cup giant slalom race at the Soldeu resort on Sunday. (ALBERT GEA)
Tessa Worley of France competes during the women's alpine skiing World Cup giant slalom race at the Soldeu resort on Sunday. (ALBERT GEA)

France's Worley wins second straight GS Add to ...

Tessa Worley of France fought off gusting winds to win a second consecutive World Cup giant slalom on Sunday in the Andorran Pyrenees, while overall leader Lindsey Vonn finished more than a second behind.

Canada's Marie-Michele Gagnon claimed her second top-10 result in as many days with a seventh-place finish.

Worley led after the opening run and held off a strong challenge by Slovenia's Tina Maze to claim her seventh career victory in two minutes 1.80 seconds.

Finishing 0.16 seconds back in second, Maze chipped into Vonn's commanding point total with her seventh podium of the season. Defending World Cup champion Maria Hoefl-Riesch was 0.75 seconds off the pace in third.

Gagnon, a 22-year-old from Lac-Etchemin, Que., was eighth on Saturday. She finished just over a second off the lead on Sunday in 2:03.08.

“Two top 10's in a weekend — I always dreamed of that,” said Gagnon. “I was starting 25th today, so I said to myself, `Let's go, let's attack and see what can happen.’ I'm happy.”

Vonn, still on course for her fourth title, will have to wait for her 51st career win after finishing eighth, 1.36 seconds back.

Even though Vonn was denied a big points haul, the American skier still holds a 410-point cushion over Maze and is feeling confident about her chances of reclaiming her title.

“It looks pretty good, there are quite a few more speed races left, not many tech races,” Vonn told The Associated Press. “So it looks pretty solid at this point.

“It's not over until it's over, but I am happy with how it's going.”

Maze agreed that her chances of catching her rival are slim.

“Hope, you always have to have it,” the giant slalom world champion said. “But 400 points is a lot, so I don't think she feels any pressure.”

Marie-Pier Prefontaine of Saint-Sauveur, Que., was 21st and Erin Mielzynski of Guelph, Ont., didn't qualify for the second run.

Strong winds, which forced the cancellation of Friday's giant slalom, again threatened the race as gusts picked up after the first run.

With uphill drafts at 30 km/h, race organizers decided to reduce the course to 300 metres and 39 gates from the 400 metres and 50 gates in the opening run.

“In the first run there was a lot of wind at the start, so it was better (after the change),” said Worley, who won the previous giant slalom event last month in Slovenia. “But I didn't want to think about it and just focused on my skiing.”

Worley's triumph moved her ahead of Olympic gold medallist Viktoria Rebensburg into first place in the giant slalom standings. Rebensburg was one of 10 skiers who failed to finish the first run after missing a gate. It was the German skier's first time not to finish a giant slalom event in more than three years.

Just after Maze had gone in front with a strong final run, the 22-year-old Worley sliced down the shortened course on the Avet slope.

“In the second run I just stayed fast and kept my speed up until the finish,” Worley said.

Vonn, who crashed during Saturday's slalom on the same hill, was unable to recover from a bumpy first run.

“Unfortunately, I made a really big mistake right in the middle of the course going onto the flat and lost a lot of time,” she told the AP.

On Saturday, Marlies Schild of Austria won her sixth slalom of the season.

This is the first time Andorra, a small principality tucked between France and Spain, has hosted World Cup events.

The women's World Cup next moves on to Sochi, Russia, for downhill and super-combined races.

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