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Paerson triumphs in final super-G

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LENZERHEIDE, Switzerland -- Swede Anja Paerson won the final women's super-G race of the season in Lenzerhaide, leaving Maries Schild with one hand on the overall World Cup trophy.

While triple world champion Paerson powered back to form to record her first World Cup victory for exactly a year, Schild' finished third, her best super-G result of the season.

Slalom specialist Schild, who also finished on the podium in Wednesday's downhill, stretched her advantage over team mate Nicole Hosp to 70 points, which means she can clinch the title in Saturday's slalom where she will be going for a record-equaling eighth win of the season.

"I really hope that it can be over on Saturday," said Schild, who had earlier watched her boyfriend Benjamin Raich take second in the men's race to bolster his hopes of retaining his World Cup crown.

"I was inspired by watching Benni to do so well, although I didn't speak to him after his race.

" It was a great performance for me to be on the podium because it was very difficult in the warm conditions and I made a lot of mistakes."

Paerson had not won on the World Cup since last season's finale on home snow in Are but dazzled in the sunshine, winning by 0.67 seconds from Austrian Andrea Fischbacher. Schild was 0.93 seconds back while Hosp could manage only fifth.

"This was a major goal of mine to win a World Cup race this season," said 2005 overall World Cup champion Anja Paerson after performing her trademark belly slide in the finish area.

"I was mad when I missed out in Tarvisio recently and was really aggressive today. It was very difficult because the snow was so warm. I made so many mistakes I can't believe I won."

Made amends

Paerson made amends for her disappointing World Cup season when she won super-G, downhill and super-combined golds at the world championships in Are last month.

Julia Mancuso, bidding to become the first American woman to win the World Cup since Tamara McKinney in 1983, was hindered by the soft snow conditions and had to settle for seventh, leaving her 110 points off the pace.

Renate Goetschl, who has won both the downhill and super-G titles this season, was the only other woman who could have overhauled Schild but she pulled up near the top of the course.

Paerson celebrates her first World Cup victory for a year.

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