Mikaela Shiffrin, the 22-year-old new American Olympic champion in giant slalom will skip Saturday’s Super-G race, her mother and coach, Eileen, told USA TODAY on Thursday (Feb. 15). The postponement of two races—due to weather—has resulted in a compressed schedule that makes it impossible for her to compete in all of them.
“She will have raced and trained – or tried to race – for six days in a row,” Eileen Shiffrin said. “She has to have a day off.”
While it was supposed to be held on Monday, the giant slalom was postponed until Thursday because of blustery conditions at the Pyeongchang Games. The slalom was postponed on Wednesday because of similar weather, and will be run Friday, Feb. 16. Having Shiffrin compete in the Super-G scheduled for Saturday would have meant three consecutive days of racing. It was determined to be too much with the downhill still to come Feb. 21 and the alpine on Feb. 23.
“It’s not a big goal anyway,” Eileen Shiffrin said. “We have speed girls who can race Super-G. She wanted to have shot at the hill and see how she would stack up against the speed girls, and then the coaches would choose the fastest people to go. There’s not even going to be an opportunity for her. We’re just going to get her a day of rest and then go do the downhill and combined.”
Shiffrin is favored to win the slalom, where she is the defending Olympic champion. She’s also a favorite for gold in the combined, and will be in contention for a medal in the downhill.