Mikaela Shiffrin celebrates finishing first at the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup women's slalom on March 10, 2018 in Ofterschwang, Germany.
Mikaela Shiffrin needed only to place 10th or higher in Saturday’s slalom race in Ofterschwang, Germany in order to clinch her fifth world cup title in the discipline.
But as the world knows by now, Shiffrin does more than just the minimum.
The two-time Olympic gold medalist won the event with a time of 1:49.10 and claimed the slalom title for the second year in a row and fifth time since 2013, when she became the fourth-youngest woman to win a world cup title and the first American slalom world cup winner since 1983. The only year she missed out on the title was 2016, when she had to skip races because of a knee injury and finished fourth overall.
The victory was also her first since winning the gold medal in giant slalom at the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, where she also took silver in alpine combined. Given her dominance in slalom throughout her career, Shiffrin was expected to defend her 2014 Olympic gold medal in the event but finished fourth. She admitted after the race that her nerves got to her, even causing her to vomit just before her first run.
On Friday, Shiffrin clinched her second consecutive and career overall world cup title with a third-place finish in giant slalom. She came into the race with a 561-point overall lead over Switzerland’s Wendy Holdener, in second place. Holdener finished second in slalom, followed by Sweden’s Frida Hansdotter.
The world cup victory was Shiffrin’s 11th of the season, tying her career high for a single season, and her 17th time on the podium this season. She is the first skier to win 42 world cup races before turning 23, which she will do on Tuesday.