Mikaela Shiffrin adds to World Cup overall lead, takes second in Lake Louise downhill | VailDaily.com

Mikaela Shiffrin adds to World Cup overall lead, takes second in Lake Louise downhill

Mikaela Shiffrin skis down the course during the women's World Cup downhill Saturday in Lake Louise, Alberta.
Associated Press

Nobody is catching Mikaela Shiffrin in the women’s World Cup overall race if she stays healthy. That becomes more obvious with each start.

On Saturday, Shiffrin nearly picked up her second career downhill win on the speed track at Lake Louise, Alberta, finishing just 0.13 seconds back of Austria’s Nicole Schmidhofer, who won in 1 minute, 49.92 seconds. Shiffrin was faster than Schmidhofer for most of her run but lost time on the bottom.

Italy’s Francesca Marsaglia was third and the Czech Republic’s Ester Ledecka, who won Friday’s downhill, took fourth.

The result gives Shiffrin her fourth downhill podium — and her 88th World Cup podium in her career — to add to what already looks like an insurmountable lead in the overall race just seven races into the season. Shiffrin now owns a 270-point lead (446-176) over Switzerland’s Michelle Gisin.

Shiffrin won her first downhill in Lake Louise in 2017 and her first super-G on the same track last season. The podium finish Saturday was her fifth this season, which includes two slalom wins. She’ll go for her sixth podium in Sunday’s super-G, the first race in the discipline this season.

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Alice McKennis, who has ties to the Vail Valley finished 10th, a promising result for the two-time Olympian who missed all of last season trying to come back from a broken leg that refused to heal. To get back on the mountain, McKennis did extensive rehab under the direction of Jimmy Pritchard, the director of strength and conditioning with Ski and Snowboard Club Vail.

Alice Merryweather, another American, finished right behind McKennis in 11th.

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