Mikaela Shiffrin comes back for 49th World Cup win

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Make it 49 World Cup wins for Mikaela Shiffrin, not that she’s keeping track. She goes for No. 50 on Saturday.

The 23-year-old won her fourth straight World Cup start, capturing a giant slalom in snowy Courchevel, France, on Friday.

Shiffrin made up a .08 deficit from the first run to prevail by .14 over 2010 Olympic GS champion Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany. The second-run start was moved down due to the weather. Full results are here.

“Normally, I’m having trouble with this kind of conditions when it’s inconsistent or a little bit soft snow, and definitely I have trouble when it’s bad visibility,” said the normally reserved Coloradoan, who screamed a “Yes!” and “Woo!” when she skied into the lead by .33 with two skiers still to go, including first-run leader Rebensburg. “It’s really exciting today because those were the two things we were all battling in the second run. My skis felt just perfect.”

Shiffrin is the youngest skier to reach 49 World Cup wins and will be the youngest to 50 by winning any of the upcoming technical races ahead of the world championships in February.

“We were talking last night. I didn’t know how many wins I had,” said Shiffrin, whose first came Dec. 20, 2012 at age 17. “I mean, yeah, I know, but I’m trying to kind of ignore it. … It’s just a number.

“If you asked me five years ago, I would never think that I could be in this position.”

She has won six of her 10 starts this season and in every discipline save downhill and super combined (the latter, thought to be fazing out of the Alpine program, will only be contested once this season on Feb. 24).

Shiffrin skipped a downhill and super-G on Tuesday and Wednesday, a decision made before she felt back soreness after winning her last event, a parallel slalom, on Dec. 9.

One of Shiffrin’s goals is to become the fourth woman to win a race in every discipline in one season, joining Petra KronbergerJanica Kostelic and Tina Maze.

The next priority is Saturday’s slalom in Courchevel. Shiffrin is undefeated in her trademark event since finishing a shocking fourth at the PyeongChang Olympics, where she did win the GS. The event streams live on NBC Sports Gold and Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA (broadcast info here).

Shiffrin is one shy of Austrian Marlies Schild‘s record 35 World Cup slalom victories.

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