Thursday, December 29, 2016

Hat-trick For Mikaela Shiffrin in Semmering

Mikaela Shiffrin won her third race in a row in Semmering. The last woman to win three races in a three day span was Swiss great Vreni Schneider in 1989.
Shiffrin continued her unbeaten streak in slalom with another demonstrative victory today. The Olympic champion dominated both slalom runs to finish ahead of Tour veteran Veronika Velez Zuzulova (+ 0.64) and Wendy Holdener (+ 1.54).
"I felt like I was fighting, so I’m proud of that", Shiffrin explained in the finish. "I didn’t even know that was a record, I was just trying to ski fast and have some fun. I’m still searching to have a perfect run and a really fast run, but sometimes it’s better to fight so I did that today and I’m happy. I was trying to think about how Marcel Hirscher or maybe Henrik (Kristoffersen) would ski it. I don’t think I came close to that, but I was trying to channel that energy".
Velez Zuzulova was understandably disappointed to lose out on a victory so close to the finish, but has faith that her skiing is there and is just waiting for the right time to shine and challenge Shiffrin’s slalom dominance.
"It’s hard", she admitted. "For sure it’s hard because I try every race but I feel better and better and I hope it will go on the right way and it will come at the right time".
Echoing The Slovakian, Holdener also feels like she has the speed to beat Shiffrin. The Swiss is planning on a couple of solid training days in Austria before her next chance at a win in Zagreb next week.
"The first run was tougher than the second because it was turnier", Holdener said. "Yesterday I had the same problems. I had to fight a lot so I was used to it today. At the moment, I need some training days, but when I ski like I can, I can win".

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