Mikaela Shiffrin may not have to make World Cup decision
Will there be events in which to compete?
Will Mikaela Shiffrin return to the World Cup this season? Is there anything to which she could return?
The first question is up to Shiffrin, and we respect whatever decision as she decides in the wake of the death of her father, Jeff, last month.
However, events around the world may answer the second question for Shiffrin.
Ofterschwang, Germany was scheduled to host a giant slalom and slalom this weekend, but the region has no snow. Those events have been canceled with no makeup events announced by FIS.
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In theory, that leaves another set of tech events in Are, Sweden, parallel slalom, GS and slalom next weekend, followed by the World Cup finals in Cortina, Italy, March 16-22.
However, with the coronavirus appearing in Italy, Ski Racing Magazine is reporting that the World Cup finals may be scrubbed.
According to Geoff Mintz’s report, FIS said in a statement on Monday, “After a long discussion, the council agreed with the request of the Italian Winter Sports Federation (FISI) on the advice of the Italian Regional Government and Health Authorities in Veneto to wait until Friday, March 6 to make a final decision on the staging of the FIS Alpine World Cup Finals in Cortina.”
What’s more, the Austrian Ski Federation, no small player in the World of Alpine skiing, is calling for an immediate cessation of racing.
Were the Cortina World Cup finals to be called off on Friday, it’s not inconceivable to see FIS just pulling the plug on the season, rendering any decision Shiffrin might be making moot.
Were the World Cup standings to be frozen in time, Italy’s Federica Brignone would win globes in the overall, the giant slalom and combined. Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova would win the slalom crown, while Switzerland’s Corinne Sutter would have the downhill and super-G titles.
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Jeff Shiffrin, with his wife, Eileen, made the Vail area their home decades ago, and together raised Mikaela and Taylor Shiffrin, who was a member of the two-time NCAA Champion University of Denver Ski Team.