Mikaela Shiffrin in action during the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women's Slalom on Dec. 29, 2020 in Semmering, Austria.
After recording her first win of the season earlier this month Mikaela Shiffrin ended the year by taking third in a world cup slalom Tuesday in Semmering, Austria.
The result marks Shiffrin’s 43rd podium finish in her previous 46 slalom starts, and her third podium finish in five races so far this season. However, the result also marked the first time since Jan. 10, 2017 — a streak of 28 races — that neither Shiffrin nor Slovakian rival Petra Vlhova stood atop the podium in a world cup slalom.
Shiffrin, 25, was coming off a giant slalom win earlier this month in Courchevel, France, and she started fast in the first of two runs on Tuesday before ultimately edging second place Michelle Gisin of Switzerland by .02 of a second. However, racing under the lights later in the evening, Shiffrin skied the ninth fastest second run and end up third overall, finishing .57 behind Gisin. Austria's Katharina Liensberger was second, crossing the line .11 behind Gisin. Nina O’Brien, another U.S. skier, raced to a career-best ninth place.
Following Tuesday’s result Shiffrin ranks fourth in the season slalom standings and third overall.
Shiffrin’s win in Courchevel put her at 67 in world cup competition, tying her for third all-time with Austria’s Marcel Hirscher. Only Sweden’s Ingemar Stenmark with 86 and fellow American Lindsey Vonn with 82 have more. Shiffrin will have her next opportunity to take sole possession of third place on Sunday, when a women’s slalom is held in Zagreb, Croatia.
A two-time Olympian and two-time gold medalist, Shiffrin is skiing only the technical events — slalom and giant slalom — following an abbreviated offseason due to COVID-19. She’s now raced five times this season and finished among the top five in each.
However, after missing the end of last season following the death of her father, Jeff Shiffrin, she has now gone a calendar year without a world cup slalom win, with her last victory coming Dec. 29, 2010, in Lienz, Austria.