Alpine skiing: NZ teenager Robinson wins season-ending giant slalom – Metro US

Alpine skiing: NZ teenager Robinson wins season-ending giant slalom

Alpine Skiing – World Cup Finals
Alpine Skiing – World Cup Finals

(Reuters) – New Zealand’s Alice Robinson won the season-ending women’s World Cup giant slalom in Lenzerheide with a storming second run on Sunday to deny Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin a 70th career victory.

Shiffrin had led after the first leg in the Swiss resort, with Robinson in fourth. With 0.77 seconds to make up, the 19-year-old produced the fastest run to beat the American by 0.28 seconds.

The victory was Robinson’s third in the World Cup, all in giant slalom, and first of the season. Slovenia’s Meta Hrovat was third in a race held without spectators due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Italy’s Marta Bassino had already won the World Cup giant slalom title and Shiffrin ended the season second in the standings, 126 points behind. She was also second in the slalom rankings behind Austrian Katharina Liensberger.

Sunday was the 26-year-old Shiffrin’s 106th World Cup podium finish.

“There’s a lot of things that went totally different this season and I had a lot of uncertainty personally,” Shiffrin had said after Saturday’s race.

“It’s been quite successful, even if it’s comparatively not as successful as other seasons.”

The American won four medals at last month’s world championships in Cortina d’Ampezzo, including giant slalom silver. She missed the start of the season due to a back injury after taking time out following the death of her father.

“It’s a really good stepping stone for me. I’m trying to take just the moments that are positive and move forward with that,” she added.

Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova had clinched the overall World Cup title after finishing sixth in Saturday’s slalom, becoming the first skier from her country to take the big crystal globe in the 54-year existence of the World Cup.

“It’s something amazing. Before this season our main goal was to win the overall. I did almost everything and it wasn’t easy for me to change from speed to slalom,” she said after finishing 11th in Sunday’s race.

“It was a really, really tough season for us.”

Vlhova ended the season with 1,416 points overall to Swiss rival Lara Gut-Behrami’s 1,256. Gut-Behrami won the Super-G globe and Italy’s Sofia Goggia the downhill title.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Ed Osmond)