Shiffrin Fourth in Kronplatz Giant Slalom
In the final FIS Ski World Cup giant slalom before the 2021 FIS World Championships, two-time Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin snagged fourth place in Kronplatz, Italy.
Tessa Worley, whose longtime boyfriend Julien Lizeroux will retire this evening at Schladming, Austria's Night Race, put on a show second run, hammering from fifth place to take the big win. Lara Gut-Behrami was second—her third podium in four races in three different disciplines—and World Cup giant slalom leader Marta Bassino rounded out the podium in third.
It was a gorgeous day on Kronplatz’s Erta slope and Shiffrin skied into second place after the first run, behind Switzerland's Michelle Gisin. The lights were out on the bottom section of the Erta, and Shiffrin had a little trouble on the pitch second run, which put her back to fourth. Still, she was excited about being just off the podium again in giant slalom—putting her in the top six in all five giant slaloms she’s raced so far this season.
The Erta slope is known as one of the most challenging on the World Cup circuit. The start is located at 1,605 m (5,266 ft.) on the Piz de Plaies, while the finish is at 1,200 m (3,937 ft.), for an elevation change of 405 m (1,329 ft.) with a length of 1,325 m (4,347 ft.). In fact, the word "Erta" in the Ladin language means “the steep one”. The average slope is 32% and ranges from 22-61%. In order to prevail on this track, one has to work from top to bottom, bring the fire, and take risks.
"Congrats to Tessa, Lara, and Marta for putting on an impressive show. It's a tough hill, so kudos to the girls who threw down," Shiffrin said after the race. "I felt like I made a few good turns both runs and my giant slalom is moving in the right direction, but it was a tough, bumpy, and dark second run. I'm really looking forward to getting another good training block in prior to World Champs at Cortina d'Ampezzo—which is one of my favorite venues on the Tour."
The Land Rover U.S. Alpine Ski Team packed women in the second run, with Paula Moltzan skiing from bib 47 to 15th place and Nina O’Brien in 21st. Even with a sizeable mistake second run, O’Brien finished 25th overall to score for the fifth time in GS this season. Moltzan did not finish, but she's OK and skied down. AJ Hurt was also skiing strong, but skied out and did not finish the first run.
The tech women are done racing until the FIS World Championships in Cortina, Italy kicks off on February 8, while the speed team heads to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany for downhill and super-G over the weekend.
Women’s giant slalom
HOW TO WATCH
*All times EST
Tuesday, Jan. 26
11:45 a.m. FIS Alpine World Cup Men's Slalom, run 1 - LIVE, Schladming, AUT, Streaming Peacock
2:45 p.m. FIS Alpine World Cup Men's Slalom, run 2 - LIVE, Schladming, AUT, Streaming Peacock
11:30 p.m. FIS Alpine World Cup Men's Downhill (Sunday), Kitzbuehel, AUT, Broadcast NBCSN
12:30 a.m. FIS Alpine World Cup Women's Giant Slalom - same-day broadcast, Kronplatz, ITA, Broadcast NBCSN