Wait...Neither Shiffrin Or Vlhova Won The Last World Cup Slalom? - The Era Has Ended

In just shy of four years, there has not been another woman aside from American Mikaela Shiffrin or Slovak Petra Vlhova to take the top spot of a World Cup Slalom podium. Yesterday, December 29th, that win streak was brought to an end by Switzerland's Michelle Gisin.

In the last 28 World Cup Slalom races, dating all the way back to January 2017, Shiffrin or Vlhova have stood victorious at the end of the day. Shiffrin, the young American alpine phenom, took 19 of those races, while her Slovak counterpart and only slalom rival, Vlhova, took 9.

The Shiffrin/Vlhova win streak legacy came to an end yesterday when the Swiss racer, Michelle Gisin, came out on top with a lead of 0.11 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher, Katharina Liensberger of Austria. Shiffrin was able to pull a third-place finish at 0.57 seconds off the lead. Vlhova ended the day in fourth place at 1.36 seconds out of first.

Being able to top the titans of women's slalom was a big part of the day for Gisin, but there was more to celebrate than that feat alone. This slalom win was also Gisin's first career World Cup victory, which also happened to be at the same venue, Semmering, Austria, that she debuted on the World Cup scene eight years ago. To sweeten the day even further, she is also the first Swiss woman in 19 years to earn a World Cup victory in the discipline.

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Though the slalom queen did have to settle for less than first place this time out, Shiffrin is still building impressive numbers, having finished on the podium 43 times in her last 46 races. When it comes to her performance yesterday, Shiffrin was quoted as saying, “I forgot a bit how it feels to stand at the start and think, ‘I’m the last person to ski down this course tonight—whoopee!’ It’s a good thing. Even if I didn’t win the race, it’s a good thing to be in this position today and have to relearn how that feels. I was really pushing on the second run and I didn’t handle that very well. I made some mistakes, but then again, I could have been out of the course. I was fighting to stay in the course and trying to be tough with my skiing. I feel like that’s a really big step even though it’s not a win.”

Will Gisin be able to pull back to back wins in slalom? Will Shiffrin or Vlhova start the streak all over again? Those questions will be answered after the new year when the women take to the slalom course in Zagreb, Croatia.

Thumbnail Credit: Michelle Gisin/FB


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