American teenager Mikaela Shiffrin goes for fifth slalom victory of year

Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States celebrates her third place in an alpine ski, women's World Cup giant slalom, in Lienz, Austria, Saturday, Dec. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/Marco Tacca)



LIENZ, Austria — American teenager Mikaela Shiffrin has a chance to end her magnificent year by setting yet another record in Sunday’s final race of 2013.

At 18 years, 291 days, Shiffrin can become the youngest female skier to win five World Cup slaloms in one calendar year. The record is held by retired Croatian standout Janica Kostelic, who was 67 days older when she captured five slaloms in 2000.

“I didn’t even know that, I guess now I am thinking about that,” Shiffrin told The Associated Press, adding that setting records “is definitely part of my goals.”

Shiffrin, who has been dominating the slalom circuit this year by winning both the world title and the World Cup discipline title, has five career wins.

By winning on Sunday, Shiffrin would join a group of six women who have won at least five slaloms in one year, including Austria’s Marlies Schild, who has achieved the feat four times. Schild is seeking her 35th career slalom win.

MEN’S DOWNHILL: In Bormio, Italy, Canada’s Erk Guay goes for back-to-back victories in today’s World Cup downhill.

The Bode Miller-led U.S. speed team, by contrast, is still looking for its first podium finish of the season – with the Sochi Olympics only 41 days away.

In Saturday’s final training session, Guay led the way and Miller was fifth.


TOUR DE SKI: In Oberhof, Germany, Alex Harvey shrugged off a broken ski and difficult conditions to win the 4.5-kilometer freestyle prologue for the Tour de Ski, beating Canadian teammate Devon Kershaw by 4.1 seconds.

In the women’s prologue, overall cross-country World Cup leader Marit Bjoergen led a 1-2 Norwegian finish, beating Astrid Uhrenholdt Jacobsen.