Veronika Velez Zuzulova celebrates after winning the women's slalom race at the FIS Alpine Skiing World Cup in Flachau ©Getty Images

Slovakia’s Veronika Velez Zuzulova claimed her first win in an International Ski Federation (FIS) World Cup event for three years after protecting a commanding first-run lead to take top honours in the slalom event in Flachau, Austria.

Velez Zuzulova finished in an aggregate time of 1min 46.58sec to secure the third victory of her career and first since January 2013, when she followed up a slalom win in Semmering, Austria with success in Munich.

"I had to stay calm and focused before the second run and I managed it," said Velez Zuzulova. 

"So I am really happy to be on top of the podium tonight, because I had to wait a long time to win again."

Czech Republic’s Sarka Strachova finished runner-up on the floodlit course, 0.31 seconds off the pace, while Sweden’s Frida Hansdotter was 1.05 seconds behind in third.

Switzerland’s Wendy Holdener was 0.54 down on leader Velez Zuzulova after the opening run, but dropped to fourth place.

Veronika Velez Zuzulova picked up her third career win and first in three years
Veronika Velez Zuzulova picked up her third career win and first in three years ©Getty Images

Hansdotter remains top of the slalom standings on 425 points, followed by Strachova on 351 and Velez Zuzulova on 320.

The Swede finds herself in third spot in the overall standings on 581 points, with Switzerland’s Lara Gut leading on 738 and the United States’ Lindsey Vonn in second on 700.

Neither of the two frontrunners, both of whom are speed specialists, competed today.

The World Cup is due to continue with a slalom race in Flachau on Friday (January 15).

The Austrian resort is hosting a double-bill of action after a slalom race due to take place in the German ski resort Ofterschwang was cancelled as a result of warm weather and a lack of snow.