Olympic champion Perrine Laffont‘s moguls win streak dating to 2019 was snapped in unlikely fashion.
Laffont didn’t even make the podium in the World Cup season opener in Ruka, Finland. Instead, American Olivia Giaccio earned her first World Cup victory, scoring 78.51 points in the super final, while the Frenchwoman ended up fourth.
Another American, 17-year-old Kai Owens, earned her first World Cup moguls podium in third.
Laffont won all nine World Cups between the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons, plus last season’s world championships. Saturday marked her first time off the podium since January 2018, a month before she became the youngest Olympic freestyle skiing champion ever at 19.
Giaccio, now 21, was the highest-ranked U.S. woman who didn’t make the 2018 Olympic team. In limited World Cup action the last two seasons, her best finish was 14th. She also missed time after January 2020 surgery to repair a left ACL tear.
“I have had a lot of struggles and have grown in a lot of different ways mentally, physically, emotionally,” Giaccio said, according to U.S. Ski and Snowboard. “It’s a very crucial moment for my career.”
The moguls World Cup continues next Saturday in Idre, Sweden.
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