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Mikaela Shiffrin Returns To Slopes With Giant Slalom Win, Moving Into Second On Women’s Wins List

By Karen Price | Dec. 28, 2019, 10:24 a.m. (ET)

Mikaela Shiffrin celebrates winning the FIS Alpine Ski World Cup women's giant slalom on Dec. 28, 2019 in Lienz Austria.


Less than two weeks after posting her worst finish in two years, Mikaela Shiffrin not only returned to the podium Saturday, she earned her 63rd career FIS Alpine Ski World Cup win and gained solo possession of second place on the women’s all-time wins list.

With the win, Shiffrin passes Austria’s Annemarie Moser-Pröll on the women’s career wins list, now trailing only former U.S. teammate Lindsey Vonn’s 82 world cup victories.

Winning by a full 1.36 seconds in Lienz, Austria, the three-time Olympic medalist scored her third podium of the season in giant slalom. It was Shiffrin’s day from the very beginning. She led Italy’s Marta Bassino by .61 seconds after her blazingly fast first run time of 1:01.27 to take a commanding lead into the second run, then posted a time of 1:06.04 for a total of 2:07.31. Bassino finished second and Austria’s Katharina Liensberger was third, 1.82 seconds back from Shiffrin.

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Shiffrin’s last race was a much different story. On Dec. 17 she finished 17th in the Courchevel, France, giant slalom; the last time she finished out of the top 10 was a super-G in December 2017, when she was 20th. She was 24th in a giant slalom race in Are, Sweden, on March 7, 2014. With only a smattering of double-digit finishes and a whole lot of top-threes in the space between, it was an upsetting result for Shiffrin, who afterward said she had no one to blame but herself.

Shortly after, she announced she would skip competing in the upcoming downhill and combined races in Val d’Isere, France, in order to rest and train. The break did exactly what she’d hoped, as she roared back into form on Saturday and left everyone else on the hill behind.

This is Shiffrin’s seventh podium of this world cup season and her third win to go along with two slalom victories. She was second in giant slalom to open the season and third on Nov. 30. Shiffrin is looking for her fourth consecutive overall crystal globe this season and Saturday’s win bumped her to a 215-point lead in the standings over Italy’s Federica Brignone. She’s first in slalom and second in giant slalom.

Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic and Paralympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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Mikaela Shiffrin