American alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin tied Ingemar Stenmark's 32-year-old record for victories in a single discipline with her 46th career win in women's slalom at the 2021 FIS Alpine World Cup in Killington, Vermont, on Sunday.
The win was also her fifth straight slalom title at Killington. She now has 71 World Cup victories overall, good for third on the all-time list.
Shiffrin, a two-time Olympic champion, beat out Petra Vlhova in the event. She trailed the 26-year-old by 0.20 seconds after the first run but was able to come back and beat the Slovak by 0.75 seconds in the second run. Vlhova made an error during her second run, paving way for Shiffrin to capture the victory.
Swiss 28-year-old Wendy Holdener finished third.
FIS Alpine @fisalpine
This is the run with which <a href="https://twitter.com/MikaelaShiffrin?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MikaelaShiffrin</a> equals Stenmark's record of 4️⃣6️⃣ victories in the same discipline 💥<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/fisalpine?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#fisalpine</a> <a href="https://t.co/DONUWsnHXX">pic.twitter.com/DONUWsnHXX</a>
Shiffrin, who hails from Vail, Colorado, explained her mentality heading into the second run during an interview on NBC Sports.
“At my top speed, this run, I don’t know if I can ski faster slalom than that,” Shiffrin said. “My mentality was super aggressive [on the second run]. That’s really how I need to be for both runs.”
The 26-year-old told reporters that she wasn't aware that the record was 46 wins. She said her focus has never been on the numbers:
“I won't say it's not meaningful, it certainly is, but I'm trying not to focus on those numbers. The closer I get to these marks, it's hard not to think about it, and want that. I think any person would want to have those records that are named, but everybody on the mountain today wants to win, and just wanting it is not enough to actually do it … wanting it doesn't do anything for you to actually do the work or ski well enough to make that happen.”
Shiffrin, who trained at the Burke Mountain Academy in Vermont as a teenager, won the season-opening slalom in Austria, but she finished second behind Vlhova in both slalom events in Finland last week.
Shiffrin's win on Sunday put her ahead of Vlhova in the overall World Cup standings. The next slalom events will take place in December in France and Austria.