Mikaela Shiffrin in 4th after first run of Olympic slalom, says she was feeling sick before race
PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — Mikaela Shiffrin sits in fourth place, 0.48 seconds behind, in the slalom race Friday as she aims to defend her Olympic gold medal from 2014.
“I’m not super psyched with it,” Shiffrin said after her first run. “It was quite conservative, but I guess I got through the finish. I’m not super far off. I could be a lot cleaner for the second run, so that’s my goal.”
Shiffrin told NBC that she was “kind of puking” right before the race.
“It almost felt like a virus, less about nerves,” she told NBC. “We will see. I’m not super far off. It’s nice to have that first round out of the way.”
Wendy Holdener, of Switzerland, leads the race with a time of 48.89 seconds. Frida Hansdotter of Sweden is 0.20 seconds behind Holdener, and Swedish teammate Anna Swenn Larsson is 0.40 seconds back.
Shiffrin is trying to win two golds in two days, something that hasn’t been done by an American since Eric Heiden’s 1980 Games, when he won five gold medals.
A slalom gold would give Shiffrin the most golds of any American racer. She, Ted Ligety and Andrea Mead Lawrence all have two golds.
Shiffrin won the giant slalom Thursday. She said Friday that she didn’t get to bed until 10 p.m. on Thursday night — her usual routine is to go to bed at 8:30.
“It was certainly not normal preparation,” she said. “But I also knew that going into these Olympics, it’s not normal races, it’s not normal preparation, so I have to be prepared for anything. I don’t think that in and of itself had a huge impact on my first first run today.”
The second run is set to begin at 1:15 p.m.
Shiffrin will skip Saturday’s GS, resting ahead of downhill training, which is set to begin Sunday.
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