The 18th race of 2018/19 Alpine Skiing World Cup is in front of us, with ladies travelling to Austria, where they will compete in the 6th Slalom race this season. After another win from Michaela Shiffrin in Zagreb, ladies are travelling to Austria, where they will compete in Flachau. This will be the 3rd event held in Austria this season and the 2nd Slalom race on Austrian snow. In Zagreb, as mentioned, Mikaela Shiffrin finished 1st, which was her 9th win this season and 5th Slalom win. She finished the race with an overall time of 2:01.09, which was over a second faster than 2nd placed Petra Vlhova (+1.25) and almost 2s faster than 3rd placed Wendy Holdener (+1.75). With that win, Mikaela Shiffrin cemented her position at the 1st spot in the Overall standings, where she is standing with 1214 points, while 2nd placed Petra Vlhova has “only” 748.
The next Slalom race will take place in Flachau, a small village in the Austrian state of Salzburg. This year will be the 9th time World Cup returns to Flachau, where ladies will compete at Hermann Maier Piste. The slope is named after a well known Austrian alpine skier, Hermann Maier, who has achieved 2 gold medals in the Olympic games and 54 World Cup wins. Last season we saw Mikaela Shiffrin winning the event in Flachau, followed by Bernadette Schild and Frida Hansdotter at the 3rd place. In 2017, it was Frida Hansdotter who won, followed by Nina Loseth and Wendy Holdener as well as Mikaela Shiffrin at the 3rd place. As for today’s race, let’s check the favourites and our predictions;
Mikaela Shiffrin has won the last 7 Slalom races and is without a doubt one of the favourites to do so again today. She has a chance to reach a record of 8 successive Slalom victories in the World Cup with a win here. The mentioned record is currently held by Vreni Schneider and Janica Kostelic. Looking at her career, Shiffrin has won a record 37 Slalom events in the World Cup, which means only Ingemar Stenmark (40) has more wins, among both men and women. A win here would also mean she would become the first woman to win all of the opening 6 Slalom races of the season after Kostelic won 8 in 2000/01. As for her performances in Flachau, Mikaela Shiffrin won 3 Slalom World Cup races, which is a joint record among men and women (Janica Kostelic also won 3 times here). Her winning here and claiming the 21st podium on Austrian snow in her career is likely to happen, but the odds offered are far too low for us to consider betting on her.
Looking at her performances in Slalom this season, Petra Vlhova has finished 2nd in all of 5 of the Slalom races, always behind Mikaela Shifrin. With that, she can become the first woman to finish runner-up 6 consecutive times in a single event in one World Cup season. There are only 2 other women skiers who have finished on the podium more times without winning an event; Wendy Holdener (7) and Frida Hansdotter (7). As for skiers representing Slovakia, she is tied with Veronika Velez-Zuzulova with a record 4 wins in Slalom races. A podium finish here is something we can expect from Petra Vlhova, however, once more, the odds are too low for us to consider betting on her.
Frida Hansdotter has the 2nd most podium finishes among Swedish ladies (34), but she is still chasing the first win of the season. She has won 4 World Cup Slalom races, 2 of which were at Flachau (2015 and 2017), while the other 2 came from Lienz (2015) and Kranjska Gora (2014). In Flachau, Frida Hansdotter has achieved a total of 7 Slalom podium finishes, which means this venue is her most successful one. If she finishes on the podium once more, Hansdotter would equal the women’s record of the most podium finishes in a single ski resort set by Vreni Schneider who achieved 8 podiums in Maribor.
Up until now, Wendy Holdener has collected a total of 19 World Cup podiums in Slalom, however, has not yet claimed her first win. With 19 podiums without a win, Wendy holds a record among men and women, which has a bitter taste to it, but it’s a record nonetheless. As for Switzerland, her country has not seen a Swiss skier winning the Slalom event since 2002 when Marlies Öster won in Berchtesgaden. That means Switzerland is holding a record of the longest winning drought in World Cup Slalom events (150 races without a win). Will Wendy win today and end the drought? Not likely, as Mikaela Shiffrin is proving to ski on another level compared to other athletes, however, we do expect a good performance from Wendy Holdener, just like in her last 3 races, where she finished 3rd in all of them.
|Market||Prediction||Pinnacle Odds||Bet 365 Odds||Stake||Won / Lost|
|H2H (Holdener v Hansdotter)||Wendy Holdener||1.869||1.66||1 Unit||Won|
|H2H (Schild v Liensberger)||Bernadette Schild||1.847||1.83||1 Unit||Lost|