Superstar teen skier Mikaela Shiffrin finished fifth Tuesday in a rainy women’s giant slalom. Slovenia’s Tina Maze took the top spot, claiming her second gold medal of the Sochi Games.
Shiffrin skied half a second slower than Maze and just two-tenths of a second slower than bronze medalist Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany. Julia Mancuso, America’s most decorated female alpine skier, failed to finish the race after she skied off-course during her first run.
It’s a strong performance for 18-year-old Shiffrin, who’s favored to medal in slalom this Friday. The Colorado native has already won seven World Cup slalom races and is the event’s reigning world champion coming into Sochi.
Even though she finished off the podium Tuesday, she’s already getting fired up for the giant slalom of the 2018 Winter Games.
"I wanted a gold, but I think this was meant to happen," Shiffrin told USA Today. "I believe I wasn't going to win my first World Cup slalom until I was ready, because if I won it a minute early I wouldn't be able to continue to win. I think it's the same with GS. … This is something I can learn from, and the next Olympics I go to, I’m sure as heck not getting fifth.”
Read more about Shiffrin’s date with Olympic destiny.