Mikaela Shiffrin earned her 85th World Cup win on Saturday and can tie the Alpine skiing World Cup victories record on Sunday.
Shiffrin won the first of back-to-back slaloms in Spindleruv Mlyn, Czech Republic, site of her World Cup debut in 2011 at age 15, for her 11th victory in 22 starts this season.
She prevailed by six tenths of a second over German Lena Duerr combining times from two runs. Then she celebrated with an uncharacteristic shoulder shimmy before “Simply the Best” by Tina Turner began playing over loudspeakers in the finish area.
It’s not the first time that song has been played after a Shiffrin victory this season.
“Eighty-five is like the icing on the cake, and if I get 86, I don’t know if it’s going to be tomorrow,” Shiffrin said, according to the International Ski Federation. “I think these other athletes have a chance to win it so we’re going to have to find out tomorrow.”
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Shiffrin, having her best season since her record 17-win campaign in 2018-19, is now one victory shy of the Alpine World Cup record held by Swede Ingemar Stenmark, who won 86 times between slalom and giant slalom in the 1970s and ’80s.
Stenmark has held the record since January 1982.
Shiffrin races in another slalom on Sunday in Spindleruv Mlyn, the last women’s race before February’s world championships. World championships races do not count as World Cups. The World Cup season resumes following worlds in late February.
Shiffrin is on her second winning streak this season and has won nine of her last 14 races dating to Dec. 18. Last Tuesday, she won a giant slalom in Kronplatz, Italy, to break her tie with Lindsey Vonn for the women’s Alpine World Cup wins record. On Wednesday, she won another GS In Kronplatz.
She leads the standings for the World Cup overall title, the biggest annual prize in ski racing, by more than 600 points through 27 of 39 scheduled races. At this rate, she could clinch her fifth overall title before March’s World Cup Finals.
She is currently tied with Vonn for the second-most women’s overall titles behind Austrian Annemarie Moser-Pröll, who won five in the 1970s.
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