Slick Vlhova beats Shiffrin at Levi slalom

·1-min read
Mikaela Shiffrin could only manage second in Levi on her injury comeback (AFP/Jussi Nukari)

Slovakia's Petra Vlhova was faster than American star Mikaela Shiffrin on both runs as she won the World Cup slalom at Levi in Finland on Saturday.

Shiffrin was a narrow second in the first run, but came third on the second descent through the tight 65 gates in temperatures that had plunged well below freezing.

Winning by 0.31sec Vlhova, the overall World Cup champion, racked up her 21st victory. Vlhova and Shiffrin have won 33 of the last 36 slaloms raced over the past four years.

"I didn't really make any errors on either run," said Vlhova. "It was a great day for me and I think I did my best."

Germany's Lena Duerr sneaked onto the podium in third after outpacing early season revelation, Slovenia's Andreja Slokar, who was third in the first run.

A three-time overall World Cup champion, Shiffrin finished fourth behind Vlhova for last season's big crystal globe after focusing purely on slalom and giant slalom.

"It was almost perfect, especially after the past few weeks. To win you need to go all in, I'll try and race a bit cleaner tomorrow. But being on the podium already is great," said Shiffrin.

The 26-year-old from Colorado has won the slalom at the Finnish ski station of Levi four times in her career but is recovering from a back injury she picked up in Soelden last month.


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