Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin seals exceptional slalom season with 5th World Cup win

The Associated Press

CORRECTS DATE: Mikaela Shiffrin, of the United States, kisses her trophy after winning an Alpine Ski women's slalom at the World Cup finals, in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, Saturday, March 15, 2014. (AP Photo/Marco Trovati)

Associated Press + More

By GRAHAM DUNBAR, AP Sports Writer

LENZERHEIDE, Switzerland (AP) — American Mikaela Shiffrin completed her exceptional slalom season with a fifth World Cup win on Saturday.

The Olympic champion was 1.44 seconds faster than any rival in one of the longest women's slaloms in World Cup history. Shiffrin already clinched her second straight World Cup title in the discipline last weekend with a win in Sweden.

"I am very proud. One of my goals this year was to hold on to the slalom globe," she said.

She had a two-run combined time of 2 minutes, 4.54 seconds. Frida Hansdotter of Sweden was second and Marlies Schild of Austria was third.

"I did a pretty good job the first run I guess so I felt more comfortable the second run, and just trying to hold on to it," Shiffrin said.

Shiffrin led the standings from start to finish after winning the season-opening race in November at Levi, Finland. Her ninth career World Cup victory on Saturday came two days after her 19th birthday.

Shiffrin will also race the season-ending giant slalom on Sunday.

Only four racers were within 2 seconds of Shiffrin on a tiring end-of-season course Saturday.

"You have to try to just be as efficient as you can and not waste any energy," Shiffrin said after the first run. "Try to just stay close to the gates as you can, make sure you are moving quick in between and let your skis do the rest of the work."

Tina Maze of Slovenia, whom Shiffrin edged for the slalom title in a thrilling race here last season, was 5.65 seconds back in the morning and did not start the second leg.

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