Michael Schiffer holds the World Cup record and, finally, a competitor


But in a sport with up to 60 racers in deep domains, this season’s results show the closeness of competition between the top two ranked women skiers who are constantly separated from their peers. Schiffrin has won twice and finished second twice. Vlhova won twice and finished second and third.

Despite being the same age, the two racers have never been close rivals. Schiffrin competed in the World Cup round when he was 15 and won his first race in 2012. He now has 71 World Cup victories, topping only Lindsay Vaughan’s 82 wins and Steinmark’s 86 wins. Three Olympic medals, including two gold medals. Vlhova won the first of his 22 World Cup races in 2015 and did not win an Olympic medal.

But in the last two seasons, Vlhova has won five of Schiffen’s with eight World Cup victories. Schiffrin missed a few months of the 2020 World Cup season after his father Jeff died in an accident at a family home in Colorado on February 2, 2020. In late 2020, after the epidemic had delayed or canceled most of his off-season training, the still upset Schiffrin returned to racing and was among the World Cup elites, but not as fully dominated as he once did. For example, in the 2018-19 season, he won a whopping 17 times.

On Friday, when asked to describe his relationship with Vlhova, Schiffrin warned that the World Cup pitch was full of many talented, fast skiers, but when Vlhova was so good he said, “There is nothing I can do, I can not do it better than she does.”

He added: “When I do my best skiing, there is nothing that she or anyone else can do, it’s really good. But all of these are at the highest level, and it causes more nervousness.

Shifrin and Vlhova hugged, chatted and congratulated each other after four close races this year. Prior to Sunday’s event, they did a prerequisite course test side by side and did not stand more than six feet.

Before the race, however, Schiffrin acknowledged that being close to him on a weekly basis, including tense minutes in the crisis starting area, would be a no-brainer.


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