American Ted Ligety posted a blazing second run yesterday to grab 10th place in a World Cup giant slalom in Val d'Isere in the French Alps as Bode Miller sat out the event to protect an ankle he injured playing volleyball.

Ligety made several crucial errors that cost him more than two seconds in the morning run on the icy Face de Bellevarde course but stormed back to post the second run's best time, 1 minute, 9.86 seconds, and finish 0.83 seconds away from a second podium finish in as many days.

Marcel Hirscher, a 20-year-old Austrian, claimed his first World Cup victory, winning ahead of Massimiliano Blardone of Italy and Austrian Benjamin Raich in a combined time of 2:16.28.

The U.S. team said Miller did not want to risk aggravating the injury by competing in the GS. The two-time World Cup champion is expected to race four events next week in Italy, at Val Gardena and Alta Badia.

Vonn finishes eighth. With thick fog covering one of her least favorite slalom slopes, American Lindsey Vonn opted for a safe second run to finish eighth in a World Cup slalom in Are, Sweden. Vonn lost the overall points lead to Maria Riesch of Germany.

Riesch finished second behind Sandrine Aubert of France and now leads the American by 20 points in the overall World Cup standings.

Surgery for Kostelic. Former slalom world champion Ivica Kostelic of Croatia is expected to compete at the Winter Olympics after the sixth knee operation of his career. Croatia's ski federation said in a statement that Kostelic had surgery yesterday to repair cartilage in his right knee and that his ligaments were unaffected.

The federation said that he would likely begin training early next month ahead of the Feb. 12 start of the Vancouver Games.

Kostelic, 30, was hurt in Friday's World Cup super combined in Val d'Isere.

Davis wins. Shani Davis won the men's 1,000 meters at a long-track speedskating World Cup event in Utah. Skating in the final pairing at the Utah Olympic Oval in Kearns, Davis crossed in 1:6.67.

Christine Nesbitt of Canada won the women's 1,000 meters in 1:13.36.

Austrians win biathlon. The host team won a men's biathlon 7.5-kilometer relay race in Hochfilzen, Austria, the team's fifth World Cup victory in the discipline. Russia finished second.

A medal for Hamlin. World champion Erin Hamlin added a World Cup medal to her collection.

Hamlin was third in a World Cup race in Lillehammer, Norway, for her highest series finish, becoming the first U.S. woman to win a medal in the series since Ashley Hayden took bronze at Winterberg in 2005.

Holcomb bobs on. Steven Holcomb of the United States drove to his third straight World Cup four-man bobsled victory of the season, in Winterberg, Germany, further cementing himself as the Olympic favorite.

Holcomb and his reigning world championship team of Justin Olsen, Steve Mesler, and Curt Tomasevicz finished two runs in a combined 1:50.70.