Mikaela Shiffrin rallies to finish 3rd in slalom
The Associated Press
FLACHAU, Austria — Frida Hansdotter of Sweden dominated a World Cup night slalom Tuesday, strengthening her position at the top of the discipline standings going into the world championships in Colorado next month.
Loudly cheered by 14,800 spectators, Hansdotter built on her first-run lead to finish in a combined time of 1 minute, 49.59 seconds.
Tina Maze of Slovenia was 0.61 behind in second, and Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin of Eagle-Vail improved from a disappointing opening run to finish third, 0.63 behind.
Hansdotter led Maze by 0.23 after the opening run but used a flawless final run for a convincing win.
It was the Swede’s 14th career World Cup podium but only second victory. She also won in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, last season.
Hansdotter now has 420 points in the slalom standings, with two-time champion Shiffrin in second place on 379 points.
Maze went further ahead in the overall standings with 857 points, well ahead of Shiffrin on 605 points.
However, Maze has two weekends of speed racing coming up in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, and St. Moritz, Switzerland, while Shiffrin won’t race on the World Cup until after the world championships at Vail/Beaver Creek.
Shiffrin, who had won the event for the past two years, avoided mistakes in her first run but was still 0.68 behind Hansdotter in eighth.
Hansdotter was runner-up to Shiffrin both times the American won here.
Shiffrin looked more aggressive in her second run and posted the second-fastest time after Veronika Velez-Zuzulova.
After winning in Kuehtai, Austria, and Zagreb, Croatia, recently, Shiffrin missed out on yet another record — as no Americam skier has won three World Cup slaloms in a row.
Eight of the 30 skiers who qualified for the second run failed to finish on the demanding course.
The annual night slalom is the race with the most prize money on the women’s circuit, with the winner taking home $62,300.
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