Swiss skier Gisin ends Shiffrin-Vlhova winning slalom streak

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SEMMERING, Austria — Michelle Gisin earned her maiden World Cup win on Tuesday, becoming the first Swiss skier to win a women’s slalom in nearly 19 years.

Gisin trailed first-run leader Mikaela Shiffrin by two-hundredths of a second but posted the second-fastest time in the final run as the American dropped to third, 0.57 behind.

Gisin’s win ended a streak of 28 slaloms that were won by either Shiffrin, who triumphed 19 times, or Petra Vlhova. That streak started in January 2017.

“I broke the incredible run of two giants,” Gisin said. “It’s a perfect day.”

Erin Mielzynski of Collingwood, Ont., was 18th, Laurence St-Germain of St. Ferréol-les-Neiges, Que., was 21st and Amelia Smart of Invermere, B.C., was 25th.

Vlhova was nearly nine-tenths off the pace in sixth after the first run before improving to fourth.

Vlhova had won all five slaloms since Shiffrin last won in Lienz, Austria, one year ago.

Katharina Liensberger posted the fastest time in the final run and the Austrian trailed Gisin by 0.11 in second.

It was the first slalom win for the Swiss women’s team since Marlies Oester shared victory with Kristina Koznick of the United States at a race in Berchtesgaden, Germany, in January 2002.

The Swiss drought lasted for 162 slaloms.

Gisin had nine previous podium results on the World Cup but was lacking a victory.

However, she won Olympic gold in the combined event in Pyeongchang in 2018, four years after her sister, Dominique Gisin, shared victory with Tina Maze in the Olympic downhill from Sochi.

Federica Brignone, who dethroned Shiffrin as overall champion last season, was 16th in the Italian’s weakest discipline.

Shiffrin’s American teammate Nina O’Brien scored a personal best in slalom, finishing ninth.

The floodlit slalom took place a day after strong winds had destroyed parts the finish area between two runs of a giant slalom as gusts blew away safety fencing and sponsor banners.

Workers rebuilt the setup at the bottom of the Zauberberg course early Tuesday.

The women’s World Cup continues with another slalom in Zagreb, Croatia, on Sunday.


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