Alpine

Thrilling World Cup Victory for Shiffrin

by
USSA
2017-03-10 16:31
 

SQUAW VALLEY, CA (March 10, 2017) – Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) provided more than 8,000 ski racing fans lining Squaw Valley's Red Dog course with a thrilling victory, and moved one step closer to the overall World Cup title after winning Friday’s Audi FIS Ski World Cup giant slalom.

“It’s awesome,” Shiffrin said. “The people in California are so nice. It’s great to win in front of my own home country crowd.”

Friday’s victory was Shiffrin’s fourth career World Cup giant slalom win and 30th career World Cup victory. Italy’s Federica Brignone finished second, followed by World Cup giant slalom leader Tessa Worley of France in third.

Shiffrin
Mikaela Shiffrin won her 30th career Audi FIS Ski World Cup race Friday at Squaw Valley. (Getty Images/Agence Zoon/Alexis Boichard)

Shiffrin won the first run by 0.20 over Worley on a warm, spring-like, California day. In the second run though, Brignone almost spoiled the American homecoming for Shiffrin, as she put down an amazing run to move atop the leaderboard. Worley, who held a 0.79-second advantage over Brignone, failed to knock the Italian out of the lead.

So, it was up to Shiffrin, the final racer down to the mountain. She held a massive 1.14-second advantage at the first split over Brignone, then 0.72 at the second interval. By the time she hit the third interval split though, Shiffrin was trailing by 0.03 seconds. But in classic Shiffrin style, she shifted into overdrive and sneaked across the line to take the victory by just 0.07 seconds.

“I have a lot better skiing in me, but I definitely put some good turns out there, and I’m proud of that,” Shiffrin said. “Just to win the second to last GS of the season is a better position than I’ve ever been in at this point, so I’m really excited with today.”


Shiffrin celebrates her win in the Squaw finish. (Getty Images-Ezra Shaw)

Shiffrin though, was quick to share the triumph of her victory with the hardworking course crew at Squaw Valley, which have managed to provide a world-class venue after receiving a record 625 inches of snow so far this season.

“They have done a really, really good job here just combating all the snow they have had all winter,” Shiffrin said. “And then even just last week, putting water in it and making it compact again. I know these guys have been working tirelessly in order to provide a really good World Cup (course) for us. They did it! It’s awesome! It’s warm, and it’s not the easiest conditions to prepare for, or ski, but they did a great job!”

With Friday’s victory, Shiffrin built upon her overall World Cup lead over Slovenia’s Ilka Stuhec, who crashed and did not finish the first run. Shiffrin leads with 1,423 points. Stuhec has 1,145, followed by Italy’s Sofia Goggia with 1,045. Friday’s win also put her in contention for the overall World Cup giant slalom title with one race remain next week in Aspen. Worley leads the GS standings with 640 points. Shiffrin is second with 560.


Shiffrin takes a selfie with her team. (Getty Images/Agence Zoom-Alexis Boichard)

“I’m really excited to have 100 points after this race,” Shiffrin said. “Going into tomorrow, now I have to refocus, it’s a little bit of an adrenaline rush. I need to calm down and refocus for slalom day tomorrow.

“I can’t wait to go to Aspen; even having a 270-something-point lead going into the last, basically, four races of the season – that’s big,” she continued. “But at the same time, I don’t feel like I’ve done anything yet, so I don’t want to take it for granted.”

Shiffrin can wrap up the World Cup slalom title Saturday with a top-three finish as Slovenia’s Veronika Zuzulova Velez is currently second, trailing by 145 points. Saturday’s race will be live in NBCsports.com/live with the first run at 1 p.m. EST, and the second run at 4 p.m. EST.


Shiffrin stands atop the podium. (Getty Images-Ezra Shaw)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Mikaela Shiffrin took her 30th career Audi FIS Ski World Cup victory Friday, winning the giant slalom at Squaw Valley.
  • Italy’s Federica Brignone finished second, followed by World Cup giant slalom leader Tessa Worley of France in third.
  • Megan McJames (Park City, UT) finished 22nd; Resi Stiegler (Jackson, WY) did not qualify for the second run.
  • An estimated crowd of 8,000 were on hand to watch Friday’s giant slalom.
  • Road to Aspen: Shiffrin leads the overall World Cup standings with 1,423 points. Slovenia’s Ilka Stuhec is second with 1,145, followed by Italy’s Sofia Goggia with 1,045. In the overall giant slalom World Cup standings, Tessa Worley of France leads with 640 points. Shiffrin is second with 560.

 

 

QUOTES
Mikaela Shiffrin
Just to win the second to last GS of the season is a better position than I’ve ever been in at this point. I’m really excited with today. I have a lot better skiing in me, but I definitely put some good turns out there, and I’m proud of that.

It’s awesome. The people in California are so nice. It’s great to win in front of my own home country crowd.

I made a few mistakes, but nothing was ginormous and I was able to recover from it. Those mistakes were just because I was attacking. It’s so much better for me to add that little bit of risk, because I know I can handle it.

[On heading to the Aspen as the World Cup leader]
I’m really excited to have 100 points after this race. Going into tomorrow, now I have to refocus, it’s a little bit of an adrenalin rush. I need to sort of calm down and refocus for slalom day tomorrow. I can’t wait to go to Aspen; even having a 270-something-point lead going into the last, basically, four races of the season – that’s big. But at the same time, I don’t feel like I’ve done anything yet, so I don’t want to take it for granted.

[On the course crew]
They have done a really, really good job here just combating all the snow they have had all winter. And then even just last week, putting water in it and making it compact again. I know these guys have been working tirelessly in order to provide a really good World Cup (course) for us. They did it. It’s awesome. It’s warm and it’s not the easiest conditions to prepare for, or ski, but they did a great job!

BROADCAST AND LIVE STREAMING (times EST)
All events streaming at www.nbcsports.com/live

Saturday, Mar. 11
1:00 p.m. – women's slalom – run 1 – nbcsports.com/live
1:30 p.m. – women’s giant slalom – NBC
4:00 p.m. – women's slalom – run 2 – nbcsports.com/live
4:00 p.m. – women’s slalom – NBCSN – LIVE

RESULTS
Women’s giant slalom