SOCHI, Russia (Feb. 23) – A record-matching 17 Team USA skiers and snowboarders left the Sochi Olympic Winter Games with medals, including a record eight gold. From Sage Kotsenburg’s opening day slopestyle snowboarding gold to teen Mikaela Shiffrin’s brilliant slalom win under the lights Friday night, the American athletes electrified Sochi fans and NBC viewers coast-to-coast. The performances were punctuated with five athletes winning alpine medals along with eight of 18 medals in new freeskiing and snowboarding events. The new events were received well by the International Olympic Committee for bringing a relevant, youthful feel to the competition program.
ROSA KHUTOR, Russia (Feb. 21) – Eighteen-year-old Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) became the youngest Olympic gold medalist in women’s slalom history Friday with her victory under the lights at Rosa Khutor. The World Champion capped off the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games for the women’s U.S. Alpine Ski Team with two stunning performances, giving her the first U.S. slalom victory since Phil Mahre in 1984. Marlies Schild and Kathrin Zettel of Austria skied to silver and bronze. The historic event airs Friday night on NBC’s Primetime Olympic coverage starting at 8:00 p.m. EST and can be replayed in its entirety on NBCOlympics.com. Next up, Olympic giant slalom champion Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) guns for a second medal in the men’s slalom Saturday at Rosa Khutor.
ROSA KHUTOR, Russia (Feb. 18) – Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) skied to fifth Tuesday during her first-ever Olympic appearance at the women’s giant slalom of the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games. Heavy rain pelted the 18-year-old World Champion during her second run, but she reigned in a world-class performance to land in the top five behind gold winner Tina Maze of Slovenia. The race will be featured on NBC’s Primetime Olympic coverage Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. EST and can be streamed in its entirety at NBCOlympics.com. The men are set to ski giant slalom on Wednesday Feb. 19, when four-time World Cup champion Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) will look to win his first Olympic medal for giant slalom.
KRANJSKA GORA, Slovenia (Feb. 2) - Reigning World Champion Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) was leading after the first run but struck a deep rut in her second run, slowing her to seventh in the final Audi FIS Alpine World Cup slalom before the 2014 Olympic Winter Games. Swede Frida Hansdotter, who has eight previous World Cup podiums to her name, claimed the first win of her career. The athletes now head to Sochi, Russia for the Opening Ceremony Friday, Feb. 7 followed by the women’s super combined event Feb. 10.
Miller and Shiffrin Land Sports Illustrated Covers
PARK CITY, UT (Jan. 30) - Storied alpine veteran Bode Miller (Franconia, NH) and meteoric alpine young gun Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO), along with snowboarders Jaime Anderson (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) and Arielle Gold (Steamboat Springs, CO) are featured on covers of the 2014 Olympic Preview issue for Sports Illustrated. The iconic sports magazine printed four separate covers for its special Olympic edition, which is distributed to over four million people worldwide.
PARK CITY, UT (Jan. 26) - The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association Sunday nominated 20 athletes to the U.S. Olympic Alpine Ski Team that will compete in Sochi next month. The team is highlighted by Olympic gold medalists Bode Miller (Franconia, NH), Ted Ligety (Park City, UT), Julia Mancuso (Squaw Valley, CA) and World Champion Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO). The United States Olympic Committee will formally name the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team on January 27.
FLACHAU, Austria (Jan. 14) - Reigning Flachau Night Slalom champion Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) powered to a .90 second first run lead then cruised to a strong victory Tuesday in the resort south of Salzburg. Shiffrin took the title with a .83 second margin over a hard-charging Frida Hansdotter of Sweden in front of 20,000 screaming Austrian fans as wet snow fell throughout the final run. Universal Sports Network will replay the thrilling race at 8 p.m ET. The women's tour now heads to Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy for a weekend of speed racing.
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DENVER, CO (Jan. 13) - World Champion Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) has been named the 2013 Colorado Athlete of the Year along with NFL star quarterback Peyton Manning of the Denver Broncos. The pair will be honored with five other competitors from the Rocky Mountain state at the 2013 Colorado Sports Hall of Fame banquet on April 17 in Denver. In only her second full year on the World Cup tour, Shiffrin produced four slalom victories en route to the season-long discipline title. In addition, she won the World Championship gold medal for slalom last February to become the youngest alpine World Champion in American history. The 18-year-old returns to action Tuesday with a night slalom in Flachau, Austria where she is the defending champion. The final will be broadcast on live on Universal Sports Network with a first run recap at 2:30 p.m. ET.
BORMIO, Italy (Jan. 5) - Teen Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) sliced through sloppy snow and rain to win the Bormio slalom for her third straight Audi FIS Alpine World Cup top three finish. It was the sixth World Cup slalom victory of her young career and comes just 33 days before the start of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. Leading by a slim .03 after the first run, Shiffrin powered through the rutted snow to hold off a hard-charging Marie Pietilae-Holmner of Sweden by .13 and bump her World Cup slalom points lead to 62 points over Austrian Marlies Schild, who finished sixth. Universal Sports Network will broadcast the race at 11 a.m. ET.
VAL D'ISERE, France (Dec. 22) - Slalom World Champion Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) finished a solid eighth Sunday in Val d'Isere to close the first half of the women's Audi FIS Alpine World Cup giant slalom season. Tina Weirather of Liechtenstein won and posted her sixth World Cup podium of the Olympic winter, adding 100 points to her current overall lead over second place finisher Lara Gut of Switzerland. The women's tour will return Dec. 28-29 in Lienz, Austria - site of Shiffrin's first World Cup podium in 2011 - with a giant slalom and slalom. Universal Sports Network will broadcast the race at 1 p.m. ET.