World Cup city events get slalom ranking points

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SOELDEN, Austria (AP) -- The International Ski Federation is upgrading its city events by awarding them World Cup points for the slalom ranking.

FIS men's race director Guenter Hujara says the parallel slalom races on ramps in Munich on Jan. 1 and Moscow four weeks later "will count as a full slalom event to the World Cup."

The races in major cities started as show events in 2009 but have carried World Cup points for the overall ranking since 2011. They differ from regular slaloms as they feature two racers competing head to head on courses that are about one-third the usual length.

Hujara says that adding slalom points helps "create value" for the skiers. City events are open only to the 12 best slalom skiers plus the four highest-ranked racers in the overall standing.

FIS is looking to stage more city events after this season, with possible venues such as Circus Maximus and Madison Square Garden.