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Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova wins World Cup slalom ahead of U.S. arch-rival


Bratislava, Slovakia – Yet another masterstroke for Slovakia’s alpine ski prodigy. Slovak skier Petra Vlhova dominated the World Cup slalom in Zagreb on Saturday, thus ending rival and World Cup leader Mikaela Shiffrin’s winning streak.

Vlhova beat Shiffrin by 1.31 seconds, ending the American’s winning run of six World Cup slalom races in a row dating back to early 2019. Austrian skier Katharina Liensberger came third, 3.49 seconds behind the Slovak champion.

“I’m can’t even describe my feelings”, she exulted on Twitter shortly after her victory, adding: “I’M THE SNOW QUEEN!”

“Today I felt great from the morning and I finally did both runs really perfect with no mistakes and this victory was really important because in Zagreb I have often been second”, she more soberly told reporters. “I knew [Mikaela] would go really fast so I knew if I wanted to win I had to risk and I finally did it”.

Although still trailing her U.S. rival in both the overall and slalom standings, Vlhova’s victory in Zagreb helps her partially close the gap and, depending on her performance in Flachau in one week, increase pressure on Shiffrin.

The 24-year-old skier started her professional career seven years ago, winning gold at the 2012 Winter Youth Olympics and representing Slovakia at the Winter Olympics two years later.

Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova (center), U.S. skier Mikaela Shiffrin (right) and Austria’s Katharina Liensberger (left)

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