In Sochi, a pop star won first while a violinist finished last

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Carol Hills: But in the mean time, the Games are still on and the Women's giant slalom event today had people talking about the skier who came in first and the one who finished dead last. The skiers fought through snow, rain and fog but in the end, Tina Maze of Slovenia won her second gold at Sochi. Nathaniel Vinton is covering alpine skiing at Sochi for The New York Daily News. He's a former racer himself and he recently profiled Slovenia's golden girl. Nathaniel Vinton: She's got a new coach. She built her whole season around these Olympics and she's just a terrific racer who's spent a lot of time getting her form perfect. Hills: Now she's strong in all four alpine disciplines: Slalom, Giant Slalom, Super-G and Downhill - how unusual is that? Vinton: It's pretty unusual. There's only three or four athletes at any given time that can do that. It takes a long time to build up all of those skills and it really takes careful planning because you're going to races constantly and you're not getting much time to train in different events. Hills: Maze is from Slovenia. It's a tiny little country, used to be part of Yugoslavia. It's done pretty well at the Olympics - five medals. What goes on there? Vinton: They're crazy about skiing there. She's from very close to the Austrian border, in a pretty mountainous area and she's from a little town and it's got a tiny little ski hill there. I visited it last year and it's small and very primitive, but you can do a lot of skiing there. It was right next to her home. Hills: If I understand it, Tina Maze switched her coach about a month before the Olympics. What prompted that? Vinton: She wasn't having great result in December and something was wrong. She decided to get this coach out of semi-retirement. He was working for Swiss television and came in as a sort of an emergency measure to get her back on track. I think their relationship is mainly mental. It's not that he's changing her technique in any dramatic way. It's more motivating her and helping her make the right decisions about what kind of training to do when and so forth. Hills: There is a story about the person who finished dead last today. Vanessa Mae Vanakorn, the name she's using for the Olympics. Her father is from Thailand, so she's skiing from Thailand, but she's really a world class violinist. Did you see her race? Vinton: I did, I saw her race. I even saw her inspecting the course before the first run. Hills: And apparently she's a far better musician than she is a skier. How did she look out there? Vinton: She looked brave considering where her skill level is. She finished dead last and it wasn't an easy day. It was raining and foggy, so I'd say she looked pretty good, all things considered. Hills: It turns out Tina Maze is also a musician. Listeners can judge whether she'd get the gold for this. Nathaniel Vinton is covering the Sochi Olympics for The New York Daily News. Nathaniel, thank you. Vinton: My pleasure, thank you.