Italy's Federica Brignone celebrates after winning the alpine ski, women's World Cup giant slalom in Killington, Vt., Saturday, Nov. 24, 2018. Brunner finished in third place. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Italy's Brignone wins giant slalom in Vermont; Shiffrin 4th

November 24, 2018 - 2:28 pm
Categories: 

KILLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — Three months ago, Federica Brignone of Italy was on crutches after hurting her left knee in a training crash. It didn't take her long to get back up to speed.

Brignone won a giant slalom for her ninth career World Cup victory Saturday, with Mikaela Shiffrin taking fourth as the American competed before a home crowd.

On a windy afternoon, Brignone mastered the Killington course in a combined time of 1 minute, 51.33 seconds to beat first-run leader Ragnhild Mowinckel of Norway by 0.49 seconds. Austria's Stephanie Brunner took third for her first career World Cup podium finish.

Brignone overcame a slight mistake to turn in a speedy performance. She was also second at the season-opening GS race in Soelden, Austria, last month.

This after averting a potentially disastrous knee injury. In August, Brignone hurt one of the ligaments in her knee, but avoided any serious damage to her ACL. She missed a few weeks of training but soon returned to the slopes.

Brignone now has five giant slalom World Cup wins. She was third in the event at the Pyeongchang Games last February.

Shiffrin fell during a morning training session but was fine and able to race. The reigning Olympic GS champion from Colorado was sixth after the opening run.

"I was happy with some of my skiing but I wasn't happy with the intensity," Shiffrin explained. "Watching some of the other girls come down, they're skiing like they want it. I want it, too, but I was enjoying it too much."

The two-time overall World Cup champion was more aggressive on her final run.

"It wasn't quite enough," Shiffrin said. "Watching (Federica) go down, you're like, 'Well, yeah, that makes sense.'"

Shiffrin will try to win a third straight World Cup slalom race at Killington on Sunday. She captured the opening World Cup slalom of the season last weekend in Levi, Finland, and received a reindeer as a prize.

AP Editorial Categories: