Today marks the start of the 2012 U.S. National Championship races at Winterpark Resort, Colorado. Turning heads with her second consecutive National Championship Slalom Title at age 16, is youngster Mikaela Shiffrin. Mikaela won this year’s race with a total combined time of 1’39.57, over 26 year old teammate Hailey Duke, with a combined time of 1’41.27.
Mikaela is a Vail native who stormed onto the World Cup circuit this year with her best finish being a 3rd place, in Lienz, Austria earlier this year. This made her the youngest American Ski Racer to podium on the World Cup! Amongst other accomplishments Mikaela was ranked #2 in skiers under age 18 by Powder Magazine, stealing their cover shot. She also took home a bronze in the slalom at World Junior Championships in the 2010/2011 season. The list of her accomplishments goes on and on. When Mikaela is not on the hill she is eagerly trying to finish High School by spring 2013.
Mikaela is said to be the “fastest ski racer the U.S. has ever produced.” Mikaela Shiffrin is being compared to the great female ski racers of the U.S. such as Lindsey Vonn and Julia Mancuso. Currently Lindsey Vonn is the best ski racer the U.S. has produced winning her 4th Overall World Cup Title this winter. Lindsey has won ski races in all discliplines, while Julia Mancuso (Squaw native) has won an Olympic Gold, and two silver medals. Mikaela Shiffrin is nipping at the heals of both Lindsey and Julia with her accomplishments. Together these three women are showing the world that they will be something to contend with in the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
Lindsey Vonn, pictured above, has won the World Cup Overall Title for the past four years.
2012 U.S. Slalom Championship Womens Results
1. Mikaela Shiffrin 1’39.57
2. Hailey Duke 1’41.27
3. Kiley Staples 1’41.93