Mikaela Shiffrin, with uncharacteristic show of emotion, takes record
Mikaela Shiffrin has described her subdued victory celebrations as dorky. Sunday’s was anything but.
The youngest Olympic slalom champion pumped both fists, then just her right fist, accompanied with screams, after winning her record-tying 11th straight World Cup slalom race in Sestriere, Italy.
“I tried to have some fun in the second run, I don’t know,” Shiffrin said three minutes later. “Are you guys having fun out here? Crowd, scream!”
Shiffrin had the fastest time in both runs, winning by 1.09 seconds over Slovakian Veronika Velez Zuzulova. Swiss Wendy Holdener was third.
However, her lead was cut to .07 at a split midway through her second run. She stormed through the final gates to win comfortably.
Shiffrin is now shares the women’s record for consecutive World Cup wins in any discipline with Annemarie Moser-Proell, who won 11 straight downhills from 1972-74.
Shiffrin has said her streak shouldn’t really count, since she missed five straight slaloms last season due to injury.
With Sunday’s win, Shiffrin increased her lead in the World Cup overall standings to 105 points over Swiss Lara Gut, the defending champion, after nine of a scheduled 37 races.
The women’s World Cup continues with a combined, downhill and super-G in Val d’Isere, France, next weekend. Shiffrin said she doesn’t think she’ll race in Val d’Isere, meaning Gut will likely take the World Cup overall lead.
Shiffrin raced her first career downhills in Lake Louise, Alberta, last weekend, finishing 18th and 13th, plus 34th in a super-G.
“I’m not racing well enough [in speed races] to really make a difference,” Shiffrin said of skipping Val d’Isere.
Olympic champions Lindsey Vonn, Anna Veith and Julia Mancuso have yet to make their season debuts, all out due to injuries.
Correction: An earlier version of this post stated Vreni Schneider won 12 straight slaloms. She won 10 straight, her streak snapped by failing to finish a race.