FLACHAU – American skier Mikaela Shiffrin finished second to Olympic champion Petra Vlhova after feeling ill during a night slalom race Tuesday as she attempted to break the record for most wins on the women’s World Cup circuit.
Shiffrin was sick between runs and vomited after the second run, a team official said, adding that she would not speak to reporters.
Shiffrin matched Lindsey Vonn’s record of 82 race victories by winning a giant slalom in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, on Sunday, but wasn’t able to produce another win in her best discipline, slalom, to move past her former teammate.
Vlhova had the fastest time in the first run and then extended her lead over Shiffrin for her first win this season. The Slovakian skier finished 0.43 seconds ahead of Shiffrin, while Lena Duerr of Germany finished 0.85 back in third.
Shiffrin’s next chance to break the record will come in a super-G in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, in 10 days. She plans to sit out speed races in St. Anton this weekend.
Vonn broke the previous record, Annemarie Moser-Pröll’s mark of 62 wins, in Cortina eight years ago. Vonn retired four years ago when injuries cut her career short.
Shiffrin seemed to sense she might not have done enough after her second run, only briefly saluting the crowd as she then stuck her poles into the snow and looked back up the mountain to watch Vlhova’s winning run. She then went inside a tent adjacent to the finish area where she vomited.
Shiffrin's teammates were holding aloft ballons shaped as an “8” and “3” to form the No. 83 but there was to be no celebration this time as Vlhova, Shiffrin’s biggest rival, enjoyed the moment instead with a large crowd of Slovakian fans that follow her around.
It was Vlhova's first win this season after seven podium finishes.
“It was a long, long way to come back (to winning) here,” Vlhova said. “For me, it’s an amazing day. Thank you to my team, because they are always with me, supporting me, even if I a little bit back or a little bit down. But we were working hard on it and I’m super happy to win here, because it’s something special.”
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