ST. MORITZ, Switzerland (AP) — Pre-race favorite Tessa Worley led the opening giant slalom run at world ski championships on Thursday, with Mikaela Shiffrin in third.

Soffia Goggia of Italy was second, 0.48 seconds behind, while Shiffrin had 0.72 to make up in the second run.

No one else finished within a second of the leader.

Worley, the 2013 world champion from France who was wearing bib No. 1, made the first use of a smooth surface count in bright sunshine.

On a course with relatively flat sections, Shiffrin got into an aerodynamic tuck position like a downhill racer several times in her run.

Anna Vieth, the defending champion and Olympic silver medalist from Austria, was 2.25 behind looking far from her best weeks into a comeback from knee surgery.

In a 98-racer lineup, the final starter was 37-year-old Celine Marti, a resident of Switzerland but representing Haiti.

With only the 60 fastest earn a second run, Marti was last of the 88 finishers, more than 41 seconds behind Worley despite dipping into a tuck to cross the finish line.

"To have the luck to be with the big champions on the same course is huge," said Marti, who will return to the course Friday with most of the low-ranked starters for the slalom qualification race.

After completing the super-G race last week, Kenyan skier Sabrina Simader placed 69th on Thursday morning, less than 2½ seconds outside the qualifying time.

The 18-year-old resident of Austria put her hands to her helmet in disappointment after seeing her time.

"The slope was a little bumpy but that's normal with this number," said Simader, who started No. 80.

Marjan Kalhor of Iran, who raced at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, placed 83rd, more than 19 seconds behind Worley.

"I'm so happy today I could get to the finish," said the 28-year-old Kalhor, who trained only in Iran this winter after injuring her right knee last season.