With 6 world titles and 2 Olympic titles to her name, Michaela Schiffrin (26) traveled to Beijing as one of the top candidates. It had never occurred to her that she would not make it to the end three times.
Why should that? In the 229 competitions she has skated in at the World Cup, World Cup or Games, she has only missed the finish line 14 times, according to the New York Times account. In the past 4 years, this has happened to her only 3 times.
So it was a huge surprise when I landed next to the track in a giant slalom on the first day of competition on the Glacier in Beijing. And in the slalom, an error occurred after only 5 seconds. In disbelief, Shiffrin sat on the slopes.
Exactly in terms of the numbers she won her two Olympic titles – the slalom in Sochi and the giant slalom in Pyeongchang – was wrong. “I feel like I’ve worked really hard to skate the 5m here,” said the 26-year-old American.
The set – a combination of 1 touchdown and 1 slalom – was her last chance to win gold at the third consecutive Winter Games. With her fifth in relegation, she just had to finish her favorite part, but then again something went wrong.
And for the third time “Not Expired (DNF)” after its name, Schiffrin had no explanation for it. “I really don’t understand,” Shiffrin said. “I’m not sure when I’ll get an explanation.”
“And I can’t explain how frustrated I am because I don’t even know what I can learn from this day,” the world champion and vice Olympic champion concluded about the group.
So Shiffrin has no individual medal, she only has a (aquatic) chance in the national teams’ parallel slalom. “I’d better stop,” she said sarcastically. “But I will recharge myself to train with the team again tomorrow.”
“I really have no idea why we keep coming back, especially after today. But I’ll be back tomorrow because I’m such an idiot.”
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