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Shiffrin leads World Cup slalom, closes on 40th career win

14 January 2018

With AP Photos.Defending overall champion Mikaela Shiffrin has won her 39th women's World Cup at a giant slalom, stretching her winning streak for 2018 to three races.

The result put the American level with Sweden great Ingemar Stenmark for the number of World Cup victories before turning 23.

Shiffrin set a blistering pace on her first run, clocking at time of 51.44 seconds - nearly 1.50 seconds faster than her nearest rival Frida Hansdotter of Sweden.

Shiffrin, who won her maiden overall World Cup title last season, tops the overall standings with 1,281 points, an overwhelming lead of 721 points over second-placed Holdener. "For sure I want to win, but everybody wants to win". With a win and a second-place finish each, Shiffrin and Vlhova are now tied for the slalom points lead. "The surface is incredible and froze overnight so it's just so much fun to ski". "I'm not focusing on that, I'm really happy with my skiing right now and that's what I'm focusing on".

While a night race in Flachau on Tuesday will be the penultimate slalom ahead of the Olympics, Shiffrin will be eager to keep her momentum going in weeks to come.

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The 22-year-old, the reigning Olympic and three-time world slalom champion, also won Saturday's giant slalom victory in Slovenia, and her tally on the World Cup circuit now stands at 40 victories.

Shiffrin posted the third-fastest time in the final leg and beat Hansdotter once again, while Wendy Holdener was 1.87 behind in third for the Swiss skier's 13nd career slalom podium without winning - a World Cup record. "I don't know if a flawless run is even possible, but it was very close".

"Normally I try to forget about the first run and think like it would be a new race", Shiffrin said.

"I'm not competing, I'm just trying to enjoy every turn that I make and to make every turn aggressive", Shiffrin said.

Worley won the World Cup GS title a year ago but is still awaiting her first win of the season. This weekend's races have been moved from Maribor because of a lack of snow and warm weather in the North-Eastern Slovenian resort.

Shiffrin leads World Cup slalom, closes on 40th career win