Mikaela Shiffrin and Paula Moltzan took two coveted spots on the junior podium in Wednesday’s U.S. Alpine National Championship slalom at Winter Park. Shiffrin, a Ski & Snowboard Club Vail alumna, took first for the junior women and first overall with a convincing win. SSCV’s Paula Moltzan took the bronze for the juniors with a fifth place finish overall.
Hailey Duke took second on the day with Kiley Staples in third.
“Shiffrin is so efficient,” said SSCV coach Dan Stripp. “Very few mistakes are ever made when she is racing. Her balance and technical ability are hard to match.”
Shiffrin has had an outstanding rookie season on the World Cup circuit, which included a third place in the slalom at Lienz, Austria this past December.
SSCV’s Paula Moltzan, a member of the U.S. development team, started 13th out of the gate and moved her way up through the field to a podium finish for the junior women.
“Moltzan has had a very good year,” said Stripp.
Moltzan’s results for the season include a ninth in a NorAm Cup slalom at Vail in February. Nursing a shoulder injury from a fall earlier this year, Moltzan is finishing off the season with a couple more starts before she has her shoulder attended to.
“She did a really good job on Wednesday,” Stripp said. “She kept her skiing under control and within herself, and skied into a good result. We are proud of her accomplishments for her first year on the development team.”
Also representing SSCV at the U.S. Alpine Nationals in Wednesday’s slalom were Abby Ghent and Katharine Irwin, both members of the U.S. Team. Ghent finished 25th and Irwin finished 30th. SSCV’s Greta Byrne finished 22nd on her first run but got late on her second run and hiked part of the track to finish 44th on the day.
The U.S. Alpine Nationals continue on Thursday, 3/29, with a slalom race for the men at Winter Park.