Home / World News / Mikaela Shiffrin pulls into a tie with her childhood idol on all-time wins list – The Denver Post

Mikaela Shiffrin pulls into a tie with her childhood idol on all-time wins list – The Denver Post

Over the course of a 13-year career that ended four years ago, Marlies Schild of Austria became one of the greatest slalom racers in history. As she dominated the women’s tour in that discipline, Mikaela Shiffrin was watching from afar, racing the American junior circuit and longing to emulate her.

Their World Cup careers overlapped for the last three seasons of Schild’s career, and Shiffrin often spoke of what a thrill it was to race with her. Now, not even midway through what is only Shiffrin’s seventh season on the World Cup, they are tied for sixth on the all-time list of women’s World Cup wins.

Shiffrin captured win No. 37 in a “City Event” slalom under the lights Monday night in Oslo, Norway, and she can break the tie with Schild Wednesday in a slalom at Zagreb, Croatia.

Schild won four World Cup slalom titles. Shiffrin won her fourth last season and is well on her way to winning her fifth. She has four wins and a runner-up finish in five slaloms this season. Her win on a foggy night in the Norwegian capital, situated on a fjord of the North Sea, was her 28th in slalom. She ranks third on the career list in that discipline behind Schild (35) and Vreni Schneider of Switzerland (34).

The City Event has a head-to-head duel format involving sixteen racers, each round consisting of two shortened slalom runs. Shiffrin had the fastest time in each of her eight runs, defeating Anna Swenn Larsson of Sweden, Lena Duerr of Germany and Frida Hansdotter of Sweden before a thrilling final round against Wendy Holdener of Switzerland. Holdener finished the first run only 0.01 of a second behind Shiffrin, the smallest margin measured in ski racing. Then Shiffrin edged Holdener by 0.16 of a second in the second run to claim her fourth slalom win in a row.

“For me it’s totally different than GS or slalom or a traditional ski race because you have the person next to you,” Shiffrin said in the post-race news conference. “I always know my competitors, they really want to win, and especially tonight with Wendy. She’s so hungry. When I was in the start gate I had to think, ‘OK, I have to be hungrier, I have to be tougher and I have to be a little bit crazy.’ It worked out really well in the end for me, but it’s not always that way. You have to dig deep.”

The race was the third in a hectic string of seven races in 13 days in four countries. The PyeongChang Olympics are looming in five weeks, but for now the World Cup schedule is keeping Shiffrin focused on what’s right in front of her.

“It’s really one race after another for these next couple of weeks,” Shiffrin said. “It’s almost like, ‘The Olympics is close, but it feels so far away.’ I’m just focusing on every day, trying to be at my best.”

The win gave Shiffrin some breathing room in the season slalom standings as Petra Vlhova of Slovakia went out in the quarterfinals to Melanie Meillard of Switzerland and finished tied for fifth. Shiffrin now leads Vhlova 480-345 in the slalom standings. The evening also allowed Shiffrin to put another 100 points on Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany in the overall standings. Rebensburg didn’t race the Oslo event and now trails Shiffrin 981-510 in the overall with Vlhova in third place.

In 13 races this season across all disciplines, Shiffrin has six wins and 10 podium appearances, failing to finish in the top five only once.

All-time list women’s World Cup wins:

78 — Lindsey Vonn, Vail, 2001-present

62 — Annemarie Moser-Proell, Austria, 1969-80

55 — Vreni Schneider, Switzerland, 1984-95

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