JAN 11, 2018
Same result different day! Wherever Mikaela Shiffrin was at the starting gate in 2018 the competitors were only fighting for 2nd place. The same thing happened in Flachau, near the Redster hometown: her 5th win in 5 races 2018, slalom win N° 30 (without city events) but this time from a chasing position with the fastest time in the final on a soft and battered course.
First it rained on the Hermann-Maier run then the reigning records were broken. Never before has an athlete managed to win the first five races in a year. Never before has a female athlete before had so many World Cup points (1381) so early on in the season (after 19 races). And never before has there been such a big lead in the rankings table (821 points). Her other milestones: 41 World Cup wins before her 23rd birthday (now caught up with Annemarie Moser-Pröll), 8 wins in the last nine races. Two wins this season overall. The all time record by Vreni Schneider (14 in winter 1988/89) could also be in danger. Only 6 wins in a row by Katja Seizinger exactly 20 years ago may still hold, as Mikaela will miss out on the speed races in Bad Kleinkirchheim (Saturday downhill, Sunday super-G) to use the time for final pre-Olympic technique training sessions in Toblach.
NO WEAKNESSES: MIKAELA IS PREPARED AND READY FOR ANY SURFACE
For Mikaela’s third win in Flachau, however, an unleashed final run was necessary. “On the first run I was too tidy and made a few mistakes as well. Then I changed my approach, and was able to flip the switch in my head,” analysed the 22 year old, who didn’t let herself be slowed down by the soft conditions on the slope.”Mikaela is a force to be reckoned with in any race conditions. She has eliminated all of her tiny weaknesses”, explained Christian Höflehner Atomic Race Director ecstatically, who was also very pleased with the three best section times by three Redster protégés in the final. Alongside Shiffrin Carole Bissig (a great 18th place in her 5th World Cup race) and Julia Grünwald (19th) stood out with fastest section times and with her 10th place Katharina Gallhuber also impressively confirmed that her nomination for the Olympic Games is only a formality.
The men’s fight for the points will continue in Wengen from Friday with combined, downhill and slalom events.