ShareThis Page
Mikaela Shiffrin fights illness, wins 4th straight slalom at worlds | TribLIVE.com
U.S./World Sports

Mikaela Shiffrin fights illness, wins 4th straight slalom at worlds

Associated Press
| Saturday, February 16, 2019 11:02 a.m
760285_web1_760285-f8bc0504037d4b52a56e7eea73aee74f
AP
United States’ Mikaela Shiffrin poses after winning the women’s slalom, at the alpine ski World Championships in Are, Sweden, Saturday, Feb. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Marco Trovati)
760285_web1_760285-108fa56d4fcc407eb98a7359e721e685
AP
United States’ Mikaela Shiffrin gets to the finish area after winning the women’s slalom, at the alpine ski World Championships in Are, Sweden, Saturday, Feb. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Marco Trovati)
760285_web1_760285-12c680973e4946b190f7ca5bbf9edad0
AP
United States’ Mikaela Shiffrin celebrants on the podium after winning the women’s slalom, at the alpine ski World Championships in Are, Sweden, Saturday, Feb. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Marco Trovati)
760285_web1_760285-f606efe9a201426db8a8e6d968cdb74a
AP
United States’ Mikaela Shiffrin, center, winner of the women’s slalom, poses with second placed Sweden’s Anna Swenn Larsson, left, and third placed Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova, at the alpine ski World Championships in Are, Sweden, Saturday, Feb. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Marco Trovati)
760285_web1_760285-c902882d695b48b2aa3d70a1cf63090f
AP
United States’ Mikaela Shiffrin, right, is congratulated by Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova after completing the women’s slalom, at the alpine ski World Championships in Are, Sweden, Saturday, Feb. 16, 2019. Shiffrin won the race as Vlhova finished in third place. (AP Photo/Alessandro Trovati)
760285_web1_760285-c4f16ca2b0024d809556086f01183ad2
AP
United States’ Mikaela Shiffrin competes during the women’s slalom, at the alpine ski World Championships in Are, Sweden, Saturday, Feb. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Alessandro Trovati)

ARE, Sweden — An unprecedented victory for Mikaela Shiffrin. And easily the most dramatic.

Skiing through illness, the American barely had the energy to celebrate becoming the first ski racer — male or female — to win the same event at four straight world championships.

The 23-year-old Shiffrin won the slalom on Saturday after producing possibly the most resilient performance of her career in the second run, during which she said she “ran out of oxygen” halfway down the course. She overturned a 0.15-second deficit from the first run to win by 0.58 from Anna Swenn Larsson.

“A testament to her grittiness,” Shiffrin’s coach, Jeff Lackie, told The Associated Press, “and what she was able to accomplish in that second run was nothing short of incredible.”

A tearful Shiffrin collapsed to the snow for a while in the finish area. There were two more racers — Swenn Larsson, then Wendy Holdener — still to come down but her time held up.

When Holdener went off the course early in her run, Shiffrin’s victory was guaranteed and she had an emotional exchange with Petra Vlhova, who finished in third place.

“Everyone around me today was helping me so much to make it so that I could breathe when I needed to,” Shiffrin said, her voice noticeably croaky.

“I don’t want people to think, ‘Oh, I’m sick and I won.’ I mean I was really pushing and maybe I couldn’t have done better if I was feeling normal.”

It was a second gold of these championships for Shiffrin after winning the super-G. She also took bronze in the giant slalom.

She has won five golds at the words, and seven medals in total — putting her just one off the American record held by Lindsey Vonn.

Shiffrin had the fastest second run by 0.62 seconds.

“She’s a standout and had a standout run,” said Livio Magoni, Vlhova’s coach. “There’s nothing to say. Technically, it’s worth watching over and over again to learn from.”

Swenn Larsson won Sweden’s first medal of the championships. Vlhova’s bronze added to the gold she won in the giant slalom.

Categories: Sports | US-World
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.