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Janka triumphs after heart operation

Swiss skier Carlo Janka won the men’s giant slalom in the Slovenian resort of Kranjska Gora on Saturday, only ten days after undergoing a heart operation.

Janka finished two hundredths of a second ahead of Alexis Pinturault of France. Ted Ligety of the United States was third.

It was Janka’s first victory of the season. He is now in 5th place in both the men’s giant slalom and in the overall World Cup.

The Swiss Ski Federation revealed in February that tests had shown sudden changes in Janka’s heartbeat, possibly caused by a mysterious viral infection in the last two summers.

The skier, who last year one the overall World Cup, appeared exhausted at the world ski championships in Garmish-Partenkirchen, and withdrew from some of the races in order to recover.

Although he had been a hot medal favourite, he came away empty-handed.

It was originally planned to wait for the end of the season before perfoming a corrective operation, but worsening symptoms prompted doctors to operate earlier.

“I am happy that my health is better. That’s the most important thing at the moment. It feels good to be back at the top,” Janka commented after the race. 

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR