Vlhova snaps Shiffrin’s slalom streak

The Associated Press

Petra Vlhova celebrates after winning the women’s World Cup slalom ahead of Mikaela Shiffrin, left, in Flachau, Austria, on Tuesday.

The Associated Press FLACHAU, Austria (AP) — Petra Vlhova of Slovakia won a women’s World Cup night slalom Tuesday, denying Mikaela Shiffrin a record-equaling eighth consecutive win in the discipline.

Racing in dense snowfall, Vlhova was third after the opening run but posted the fastest second-run time.

Vlhova fell on her knees and buried her face in the snow after Shiffrin, the American two-time overall champion, finished her run 0.15 seconds behind the Slovakian winner.

“It is amazing, this is my best day ever,” Vlhova said. “I spoke with my coach before the second run: ‘It’s our time and we have to just go.’ And I did it, I finally beat Mika.”

More than a second behind Vlhova and Shiffrin, Austria’s Katharina Liensberger was third for her first career podium.

Vlhova had finished runner-up to Shiffrin in each of the previous five slaloms this season, and she is the only skier other than the American to win a women’s World Cup slalom since the start of last season.

“I am really emotional, I finally beat Mikaela. She is really strong,” Vlhova said. “She pushes me to my limits. We always have a good fight. But today I did the perfect run and I won.”

Her fifth career slalom victory made Vlhova the most successful skier in the discipline from Slovakia, surpassing Veronika Velez Zuzulova, who had four wins when she retired at the end of last season.

Shiffrin, who holds the women’s record of 37 slalom wins in total, had posted the fastest time in the opening run, but led Vlhova by just 0.31.

“I can’t say I am not disappointed, but a second place is also not bad,” said Shiffrin, who was full of praise for Vlhova.

It was the first World Cup slalom since the Pyeongchang Olympics in February which Shiffrin failed to win.

The result left her one short of the all-time record of eight straight slalom wins, set by Switzerland’s Vreni Schneider in 1989 and matched by Croatia’s Janica Kostelic in 2001.


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