Shiffrin and Hirscher have been crowned the stars of the 2019 Andorra Finals, which have brought together almost 25,000 people over the course of the week

Photo: Grandvalira

Mikaela Shiffrin has been on the top of the podium four times in these World Cup Finals and is indisputably the best skier in the world at present.

Nerves, pressure and the possibility of living up to the achievements of the great Lindsey Vonn (winner of four Crystal Globes in a single season), were not enough to tarnish her victory on the Giant Slalom course. The Avet was buzzing in an exciting final in which the very young Junior World Champion Alice Robinson from New Zealand snatched second place at just 17 years of age, 30 hundredths of a second behind the American, counting the two rounds. She was invited by the FIS and came out wearing the last number, making her achievements this Sunday even more praiseworthy.

 

“It was crazy,” Robinson summed it up, because at most she aspired to end up in the top 10. The young New Zealander was proud to stand on the podium with two great names in the discipline.
Third in the race was Slovakia’s Petra Vlhová, who maintained second place in the general classification of the discipline and didn’t stand a chance of overshadowing Shiffrin. The third spot on the podium for the overall classification was taken by France’s Tessa Worley, who came fourth in today’s race.

The skier from Vail handed over the limelight for a few minutes to Frida Hansdotter, a Swedish skier who today ended her sporting career in Grandvalira. To everyone’s surprise, she made her last descent dressed in typical Swedish costume and a basket full of kanelbullar, cinnamon cakes that are typical of her country. She handed them out as she stopped at different points on the slope to greet and hug people who have contributed towards making her career a great one, including members of the FIS. As she crossed the finish line she was given a standing ovation by the public and her fellow competitors.

Born in 1985, Hansdotter’s track record includes three World Championship medals and a Slalom World Cup and she is the current Olympic champion in this modality. The Swedish skier described this week as “spectacular”, praising how involved the public was with the competition and expressing her satisfaction at having finished her professional career in the world of Alpine skiing in Andorra.

Winning four Globes in the same season has allowed Shiffrin to “make a dream come true”, she said, and the competition this Sunday has rounded off her “fantastic” performance in Andorra.

Hirscher takes home the 20th Crystal Globe of his career

In the men’s Slalom, young Frenchman Clément Noël, born in 1997, showed what he was made of and won the race, clinching his third victory of the season. With this triumph, the two men’s technical trials of the Finals were dominated by French skiers, after Alexis Pinturault won the Giant Slalom on Saturday.

But Austria’s Marcel Hirscher, despite not having the best day and finishing fourteenth, won by points and was able to raise the Crystal Globe for this discipline and for overall champion in this World Cup, totalling 20 titles in his career. “This record is unreal, I never would have thought that I’d get here,” he said. The Austrian still hasn’t revealed whether or not he will continue to compete on the circuit next season or whether he’ll hang up his skis at the age of 30.

The last race in these Finals was also special for Germany’s Felix Neureuther, a specialist and legend of the Slalom, who announced yesterday that he is retiring from the world of competition.

In this Sunday’s event, the podium was completed by Austria’s Manuel Feller and Switzerland’s Daniel Yule, whilst in the general classification of the Slalom, Yule was able to maintain second place and third place was taken by the star of the day, Clément Noël. His great role this Sunday enabled his to move up from fifth to third position.

Final ceremony to present the awards to this winter’s best skiers

When all of the men’s and women’s races came to an end, the traditional award ceremony took place, in which the overall prizes were presented for the whole World Cup season. In the women’s category, Shiffrin was obviously crowned the champion and was accompanied on the podium by Vhlová, as well as Switzerland’s Wendy Holdener, a specialist in speed events.

In the men’s category, for the eighth time in a row, Hirscher took home this unique trophy that weighs in at nine kilograms. The second best skier of the season was France’s Alexis Pinturault and third position went to Norway’s Henrik Kristoffersen.

But Austria’s Marcel Hirscher, despite not having the best day and finishing fourteenth, won by points and was able to raise the Crystal Globe for this discipline and for overall champion in this World Cup, totalling 20 titles in his career. “This record is unreal, I never would have thought that I’d get here,” he said. The Austrian still hasn’t revealed whether or not he will continue to compete on the circuit next season or whether he’ll hang up his skis at the age of 30.

The last race in these Finals was also special for Germany’s Felix Neureuther, a specialist and legend of the Slalom, who announced yesterday that he is retiring from the world of competition.

In this Sunday’s event, the podium was completed by Austria’s Manuel Feller and Switzerland’s Daniel Yule, whilst in the general classification of the Slalom, Yule was able to maintain second place and third place was taken by the star of the day, Clément Noël. His great role this Sunday enabled his to move up from fifth to third position.


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