Three-time World Cup Super-G winner this season, Mikaela Shiffrin took the week off to recharge and train while the rest of her fellow competitors headed to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, leaving the door open for a new face to grace the top of the Super-G podium.
“It will be the first time this season that I’ve had a chance to really take a break,” Shiffrin said after winning the Super-G last week in Cortina d’Ampezzo. “My team as well. My coaches have been going non-stop since the beginning, so we’re going to take a short break, get back on the skis, get back on the slalom skis, get ready for Maribor and the World Championships.”
Shiffrin has said she does not intend to chase the Super-G title this year, but if she continues skiing the event the way she has all season, it may be her’s whether she meant to win it or not.
The U.S.’ Lindsey Vonn, who is chasing the all-time World Cup win record for a man or woman, was also absent from the startlist in Germany. Vonn made her return to the World Cup a week ago in Cortina. However, coming off a jump in Super-G training last week, Vonn felt a new pain surge in one of her knees, which hampered her for the rest of her comeback weekend. After being examined, Vonn said on Instagram she would be starting physical therapy to help lessen severe nerve pain in her knee and lower leg muscles.
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Unfortunately racing this weekend in Garmisch isn’t in the cards. My knee is still not ready to race. I am working as hard as I can to be back as soon as possible. My deepest apologies to everyone who was planing to come and cheer me on, including the Americans at the military base who have been so supportive over the years. I will cherish the memories I’ve made in Garmisch, especially my slalom win 🙌🏻 😜 Wishing my teammates good luck @lalalaurenne @aliweather_ and all the best for your comeback @iamsofiagoggia 💪🏻
For the women in attendance in GaPa, heavy snowfall ahead of competition made for a softer Super-G course at the start of the event. The speed of the course would pick up as the snow became increasingly compacted after each run. Coming out with the win was Austria’s Nicole Schmidhofer. Schmidhofer, currently the downhill World Cup points leader, crossed the finish line .23 hundredths of a second ahead of Italy’s Sofia Goggia.
Goggia, one of Vonn’s closest friends on the World Cup, made her return to racing this week after fracturing her right ankle before the opening giant slalom of the season back in October.
The U.S.’ Laurenne Ross posted her best Super-G result of the season in GaPa, finishing the day in 14th.
The men’s World Cup skiers competed in slalom today in Kitzbuehel. France’s Clement Noel held off overall World Cup points leader Marcel Hirscher to win his second slalom in as many weeks. Noel took the top slalom prize last week in Wengen. The back-to-back slalom victories are the first top finishes for the 21-year-old Frenchman. Joining Noel and Hirscher on the podium was France’s Alexis Pinturault.
World Cup Alpine racing is set to continue tomorrow for both the men and women. On Sunday, the women will compete in the downhill starting at 5:30 a.m. ET. Watch live on Olympic Channel or stream it on NBC Sports Gold. The women’s downhill will also air on NBCSN on Sunday night at 9:00 p.m. ET.
The men will finish their weekend in Kitzbuehel with the Super-G, starting at 7:30 a.m. ET. Watch the men race live on NBC Sports Gold.