For her first participation in the downhill event with an Olympic medal at stake, American star skier Mikaela Shiffrin finished on the podium at the Beijing Games on Tuesday.
She skied the course with a time of 1:34.36, +2.49 behind the winner, to finish 18th out of a field of 36 in the women’s downhill.
Switzerland’s Corinne Suter won the gold medal with a time of 1:31.87. Italian Sofia Goggia, who won gold in 2018, finished second for ribbon. Nadia Delago, also Italian, won bronze.
Shiffrin was not the favorite in the downhill, but this was her second full race in China after two disappointing starts where she failed to finish. The race was his fourth of the Olympics.
The 26-year-old Olympian had two disappointing starts to the Beijing Games, skiing and being disqualified from the giant slalom and slalom.
The double gold medalist had previously climbed to the top step of the podium in these events, which are her specialties.
Slalom and giant slalom are more technical. She next plans to compete in the alpine combined, where she won a silver medal at the 2018 PyeongChang Games. The event includes a downhill and a slalom race.
If Shiffrin wins gold at these Games, she will be the first American alpine skier to win three Olympic gold medals in her career.
Shiffrin called Tuesday’s run “another day of really good experience on those longer skis” and said she wasn’t taking anything for granted.
“I think I have a chance, and that’s really good,” she told NBC’s Todd Lewis of the Alpine combined after Tuesday’s race. “So, I’ll go, and we’ll see.”
After failing to finish in the giant slalom and slalom, Shiffrin returned to competition on Friday and finished ninth in the Super-G out of a field of 44. This event was also a first for her at the Olympics, although she was there. won a medal at world championships.
Shiffrin, an alpine skiing superstar with three Olympic medals and six world championship golds, said she wants to ski in all five individual events at the Beijing Games.
This is Shiffrin’s third Olympic appearance. Her first was the Sochi Games in 2014, where she won gold in the slalom. At 18, she was the youngest person to win in slalom at the Olympics.
At the 2018 PyeongChang Games, she won gold in giant slalom and silver in alpine combined.