OCT 29, 2018
The World Championship winter started as the Olympic season ended with a race being cancelled and a Redster athlete up on the podium. Mikaela Shiffrin started her attack on her third big crystal globe by coming in third place at the opening race of the season, the giant slalom in Sölden. The men’s race was cancelled due to heavy snow and wind.
The ladies race, whose start had to be moved roughly seven seconds downhill, was partially subject to pretty rugged skiing conditions because of the new snow. And then there was moderate visibility as well, a mix which caused problems for many other racers. “I still had a lot of fun, but I stopped laughing for a few turns as well”, Mikaela summarized, who still had room for improvement after the first run.
“I simply didn’t attack enough in the first run. But in the final I did a lot better.”
MIKAELA’S PLAN: TO RACE IN ALL FIVE DISCIPLINES
Lots of people believe the Redster champion will be able to win to the Overall World Cup for a third time in a row; where she would only be the second female racer to manage this in the last 25 years. “Third place at the beginning of the season personally isn’t good enough for me, but it’s a good start”, Mikaela said critically. Her season’s plans are fixed on the big target. “I will be racing in all five disciplines. Every technical race and a few specially selected speed races as well. Last winter the race planning was quite hectic and chaotic. We’ve learnt from that and I’ll keep an eye on my energy reserves and select my races accordingly.”
Atomic Global Race Manager Christian Höflehner sees his icon right on schedule after the opening race. “Mikaela didn’t go flat out in these conditions. It’s a long season and it’s only sensible not to risk everything in such conditions. An injury can happen quickly, just take a look at Sofia Goggia.” The downhill Olympic winner had to miss out on Sölden, after breaking her right ankle in training on the Hintertux Glacier only a week ago.
In three week’s time the season will continue with the slalom races in Levi, Finland.