TREMBLANT, Quebec — Italian skier Federica Brignone won the World Cup giant slalom at Mont Tremblant in Canada, setting the pace on the first run and keeping Petra Vlhova and Mikaela Shiffrin at bay with a solid second run.
Swiss ace Lara Gut-Behrami came into the race on the back of two triumphs in the discipline – in the season opener at Solden, Austria, and Killington in the United States – but finished the day in fifth.
For the 33-year-old Italian Brignone, this win on the Flying Mile piste on compact snow was a 22nd World Cup win, and a ninth in giant slalom.
Her combined time was 2min 14.95sec, with Slovakia’s Vlhova at 0.21sec and the American Shiffrin at 0.29sec.
“I felt slow on the second run, the snow was good it was just me, so I had to show what I can do,” said the winner according to AFP.
“I tried to go all-in, and I knew the conditions were really tough, because we couldn’t see, it was snowing, it was windy. But normally in these conditions I’m good. My brother said to me before the second run, ‘OK, we are ready; we have been training like this for a month now’.”
Shiffrin however leads the race for the overall title with 410 points, 64 ahead of arch rival Vlhova.
Shiffrin picked up her second victory of the World Cup season with a dominant performance in the slalom in Killington last Sunday.
The 28-year-old five-time overall World Cup winner broke Ingemar Stenmark’s record of 86 wins, on the circuit last season and appears to be heading inexorably for the century mark.
The Italian mastered the challenging conditions to bounce back from a mistake in the first run to complete the weekend double.
“[It was] full gas all the way,” Brignone said, in quotes carried by fis-ski.com. “It was really difficult in the second run.
Vlhova, who was in position to capture her first World Cup giant slalom victory in 21 months after the first run, dropped to fifth place, 67 hundredths of a second back of Brignone.
Shiffrin dropped from second to third but was happy with how she skied under the circumstances.
“I prefer when it’s sunny,” Shiffrin said with a smile. “When you feel it from the start already that things are just blowing around .. the gates are kind of blowing in your face, you can’t see anything, you’re like ‘you just now have to fight and try not to back off good skiing.’ I think I did it the best I could.”
The men’s super-G race in Beaver Creek, Colorado, meanwhile, had to be cancelled. “Too much wind this morning,” a statement read. “The super-G race had to be cancelled.
“We want to extend a heartfelt thank you to all the volunteers and the hardworking team. Your dedication is the true spirit of this sport. Hope to have a better weather for next races.”