Shiffrin delivers masterclass in Courchevel

Mikaela Shiffrin produced the performance of the day as she won the first of two Giant Slalom races in the French resort of Courchevel. Win number 72 on the World Cup was a demonstration of sublime skiing down a difficult slope. Sara Hector took second with Michelle Gisin in third. Petra Vlhova took fourth and Tessa Worley fifth.

Last year Shiffrin scored a highly emotional win as she won her first race since the untimely death of her father. After the race she explained: "Today was really quite a difficult day after the last weeks, we have been pushing the schedule hard. It has been a lot to just to get here and we are just starting this next tech block. I am not full tank right now but I felt that I skied some of my best skiing, some of my toughest skiing today so that is just really incredible.

"I think it is more emotional for Sara and also especially Michelle after the really tough summer she had (Gisin had Glandular Fever that stopped her training for a long period) so it is really impressive to see both of them skiing like that. It was not easy for anyone but it was a tough day, a good day and I am super happy."

Hector and Gisin swapped places after the first run but the conditions were tough for all as the ruts formed and the bumpiness of the course made itself known. While only two racers, Katharina Huber and Sofia Goggia crashed out, a number of them, notably Federica Brignone and Ramona Siebenhofer made big mistakes that cost them better results but they both still finished 7th and 8th.

Shiffrin is back on her A game. The win and the fact that Goggia crashed out means that she returns to the top of the Overall leaderboard while also extending her lead in the Giant Slalom standings, she has won both races this season so far.

Hector was fastest on the second run, dispelling the myth that early numbers would get the fastest time but it was the performance of Camille Rast, starting run one with bib 45 to go into 16th and then posting the 4th fastest second run time to move up to 9th that was impressive.

The gap on the first run between first and thirtieth was 4.30 seconds yet this was cut to 2.30 on the second. Ski racing is a funny old sport when looking at numbers!

It all happens again tomorrow!

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