Mikaela Shiffrin went from rising star to one of the best ski racers in American history in a matter of years. The only question is, how far and fast can she go? (Philippe Desmazes/AFP/Getty Images)
The 2015/16 alpine season starts now with spring training camps in Mammoth Mountain and Arapahoe Basin.
Lindsey Vonn powered to fifth, Mikaela Shiffrin seventh, in the final GS of the season as Austria's Anna Fenninger took the overall title in dramatic fashion.
Mikaela Shiffrin came from behind to take a victory over Sweden's Frida Hansdotter and claim a third straight crystal globe at the Audi FIS Ski World Cup Finals in Meribel.
Mikaela Shiffrin and Ted Ligety get ready to attack the tech events this weekend during the last races at the World Cup Finals.
The sun was out and the snow soft, and the Swedish fans were loud in the last women’s Audi FIS Ski World Cup before the World Cup Finals. Mikaela Shiffrin slayed both of her runs, taking her third win in Are and a 90-point lead in the slalom World Cup.
Mikaela Shiffrin finishes just .02 seconds off the podium in the Are, Sweden GS. The result proves that she's a force to be reckoned in GS before the World Cup Finals.
After winning the slalom gold at the World Championships, Mikaela Shiffrin took some time to say thank you to every fan, volunteer and organizer of the event in her hometown by writing this letter.
Through rain and soft snow in Maribor, Mikaela Shiffrin (Vail, CO) had two flawless slalom runs at the Audi FIS Ski World Cup, never giving up first place.
The best female ski racers in the world competed in front of a rowdy Slovenian crowd on Saturday that rivaled that of the World Championships in Beaver Creek, CO.
Now that the stands are empty, the cowbells have quieted and the dust has settled on the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Vail/Beaver Creek, all that is left is the memories.
The U.S. Ski Team wrapped up the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships with a strong closing weekend, finishing with five medals.
The Vail/Beaver Creek community turned out in force to cheer on their hometown superstar, Mikaela Shiffrin (Vail, CO) in Saturday’s slalom, and Shiffrin treated her family, friends and fans to a triumphant show.
The speed races wrapped on Beaver Creek’s renowned Birds of Prey terrain and the World Champs focus switched to the technical events. Of the 116 women at the World Championships GS on Thursday, Mikaela Shiffrin took eighth and Lindsey Vonn was 14th.
Mikaela Shiffrin and Lindsey Vonn have both served as the team’s top-ranking female athletes. Thursday's World Champs GS will be the first time the public will see them compete head-to-head at the Championships.
Mikaela Shiffrin Quick Facts
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Olympic gold medalist Mikaela Shiffrin began turning heads almost instantly when she finished top 15 in her first two NorAm Cup races. But the heads started spinning when she won a super combined in British Colombia two weeks later, and then ski fans and coaches went cross-eyed when she landed a World Cup podium during her rookie season—at age 16. She then proceeded to blow the world apart with a World Championship slalom gold medal and the World Cup slalom title during her sophomore year. She topped herself again in 2014, earning five more World Cup wins, giant slalom podiums, an Olympic gold medal and a second-straight slalom title. In 2015 she really wowed us—successfully defending her World Championship slalom title on home turf under immense pressure at Vail/Beaver Creek, and then snagging her third-straight slalom title.
Shiffrin's meteoric rise into the World Cup elite wasn't a surprise to anyone who's been paying attention. With the work ethic and passion of a veteran, Shiffrin posted her first World Cup starts as a 15-year-old and nearly scored her first points. Her first podium happened a year later (2012), and then she let loose. Here’s summary of her past three seasons:
With a giant slalom victory under her belt and super G training well underway, she’s now a legit threat in two disciplines which could quickly turn into three during the 2016 season. Safe to say…the future is bright.
"When I was a J5 I did a lot of freeskiing and I actually didn't like freeskiing. I just thought it was a waste of time and I would've rather been training or directed freeskiing. I always wanted to be thinking of something, whether it was arms forward or my parents had a saying 'knees to skis and hands in front'—it's been drilled into my head and every time I get on snow that's what I start thinking. I did freeski a lot. I did do a lot of drills. It was probably 1/3 freeskiing, 1/3 drills, 1/3 gates, and I did a lot of mogul skiing. I loved skiing the bumps, just the rhythm, trying not to eat it on a bump was really fun for me."
All that balanced time on snow paid off in a hurry, and a couple of NorAm wins and a Junior Worlds medal prompted U.S. coaches to give her a call. While walking to her dorm at Burke, she noticed several missed calls from her coach and her father, plus "20 jillion texts." A few weeks later, she was in the start gate at her first World Cup—at age 15.
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