The world's best slalom skier claimed his third successive season-opening victory, beating the field by .79s of a second at a windy Soelden.

The 29-year-old set the pace early on as he took a .90s lead into the interval following the morning run. Waiting patiently as he watched his competitors tackle the tricky slope, Ligety would have been nervous to see France's Alexis Pinturault push him all the way.

The American showed his World Cup title-credentials on his second run, however, clocking an overall time of 1:59.50 to pip Pinturault and home-favourite Marcel Hirscher to the win.