After Mikaela Shiffrin won her single season World Cup record-tying 14th race on December 22 — also her 50th career win on tour — she was asked if records mattered to her.
“It’s not really my motivation to break records,” Shiffrin said. “My big motivation is to ski well.”
After a short break for the Christmas holiday Shiffrin continued her 2018-19 World Cup season by skiing well in Semmering, Austria, however, others skied faster.
Shiffrin led the field by a slim .02 hundredths of a second lead after her first run. Austria’s Stephanie Brunner, skiing in front of her home crowd, initially posed the most-imminent threat to Shiffrin’s record-breaking day, while the FIS point leader in GS heading into the race, Italy’s Frederica Brignone, finished her first run .18 hundredths back in sixth place.
Ultimately, it was Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova who played spoiler to Shiffrin. Vlhova jumped from fourth to first after her second run. Skiing last, Shiffrin was unable to put together a run to bump Vlhova off the top podium spot and finished .66 hundredths behind the winner. Full results are here.
Shiffrin was looking for her 15th win of 2018 in Semmering, which would have made her the winningest skier in a single year on the World Cup.
Tomorrow Shiffrin can break two records with one event. In addition to the single-season win record, Shiffrin has a chance to take the top spot for career World Cup slalom wins. Watch the second run of women’s slalom tomorrow morning at 7:30 AM ET, streaming live on NBC Sports Gold.
In men’s World Cup downhill racing, Italy’s Dominik Paris won for the third time in his career on home snow in Bormio. Full results are here.
Paris’s first downhill win at Bormio was a tie in 2012 with Austria’s Hannes Reichelt. His second came in 2017, when Paris was able to hold off two of Norway’s “Attacking Vikings,” Aksel Lund Svindal and Kjetil Jansrud, for the win.
U.S. skier Travis Ganong was back in Bormio on Friday, nearly a year after he tore a ligament in his knee on the same mountain in a brutal crash that resulted in him missing the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics. A day before the race in training, Ganong’s struggles on the Italian slopes continued. Ganong went down again, this time avoiding injury, but after further discussions with his coaches, he withdrew from Friday’s race.
The World Cup event at Bormio wraps up for the men on Saturday with Super G. Watch live on the Olympic Channel at 5:30 AM ET or stream it on NBC Sports Gold.
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