Mikaela Shiffrin returned to form on Tuesday evening as she beat home favourite Katharina Liensberger for her 68th World Cup win, and her first slalom victory of the season.

Shiffrin has struggled at times this season both due to injury and rustiness after so much time away from skiing.

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She picked up a win in the Giant Slalom at Courchevel but has had to watch her rival Petra Vlhova dominate the slalom scene.

But after leading from the first run Shiffrin put in a fantastic performance to beat out Liensberger, who looked as if she might have given the Austrian women’s team their first win at Flachau.

WATCH - Mikaela Shiffrin seals victory at Flachau

Shiffrin now moves on to 68 World Cup wins, ahead of the legendary Marcel Hirscher and behind only compatriot Lindsey Vonn and Swedish great Ingemar Stenmark.

In many ways the day looked as if it might be about the Swiss team as the initial leader out of the gates in the second run was 22-year-old Melanie Mellaird.

Not to be outdone, 21-year-old Camille Rast, who started 57th in the first run, then stunned the pack as she took the lead going into the top 10 before she was eventually ousted by compatriot Michelle Gisin.

Gisin put in a storming run, and the unity within the Swiss team was clear as Rast celebrated emphatically in the winner’s chair.

Gisin then had Rast next to her while she waited for the last riders to come down the course but her stint didn’t last long as Liensberger thrilled the Austrian crowd with a blistering run.

Home favourite Liensberger has to settle for second in Flachau despite great run

It looked as if World Cup leader Vlhova might catch the Austrian but a couple of bad mistakes caught the defending champion out on this course.

Those mistakes opened the door for Rast and Gisin’s team-mate Wendy Holdener to round off the podium, her 25th podium without a World Cup victory.

OUR VIEW

This is a monumental win for Shiffrin, make no mistake about it.

Gisin might have broken the Shiffrin-Vlhova stranglehold on slalom racing a couple of weeks ago but they are still very much the two to beat.

Shiffrin has had to watch her Slovakian rival dominate the slalom but this was Shiffrin back to her best.

This was the last slalom before the World Championships in February and it will do Shiffrin the world of good to be going to Italy next month on the back of a win.

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Home favourite Liensberger has to settle for second in Flachau despite great run
12/01/2021 AT 20:58
Flachau
WATCH - Mikaela Shiffrin seals victory at Flachau
12/01/2021 AT 20:56