Day 3 of the 2023 World Championships in Courchevel and Méribél, France, consisted of a Women’s Super-G event. The field was comprised of 37 of the world’s best skiers, including Norway’s Ragnhild Mowinckel, the current leader in the 22/23 Super-G World Cup standings, and 2022 Olympic Gold medal winner in Super-G Lara Gut-Behrami from Switzerland, who also won the 2021’s World Championship in Super-G. Both had come equal second on Monday’s Super-G run of the Combined race, so were hot contenders for the podium. Monday’s fastest Super-G skier and overall Combined winner, Federica Brignone from Italy, is currently ranked third in the World Cup standings and is defending Super-G World Cup Champion from the 21/22 FIS World Cup season, so all eyes would be on her to see if the Italian race skier could make the podium a second time.
However, it was her teammate Marta Bassino who brought home the Gold for Italy in the Super-G on Wednesday, February 8, 2023. The Giant Slalom specialist had never won a Super-G World Cup race but managed to put down the fastest run of the day with a time of 1:28:06 on the ‘Roc de Fer’ race course. While it is the first Super-G victory for the 26-year-old Italian, it is not her first Super-G podium, having placed second and third a total of four times in the past.
Equally unexpected for many was Mikaela Shiffrin in second place and a mere 0.11 seconds behind the Italian. The American race skier is typically stronger in technical events like Slalom or Giant Slalom, but yesterday was another example of why Mikaela Shiffrin is the most successful female skier of all time. She is strong across all disciplines and repeatedly manages to combine her joy for skiing and technical precision into podium finishes in speed events.
Another first on that sunny day in Méribél was a joined third place 0.33 seconds behind Bassino for both Austria’s Cornelia Hütter and Norway’s Kajsa Vickhoff, whose teammate (and favorite) Ragnhild Mowinckel finished just 0.03 seconds behind her. The other favorite, Lara Gut-Behrami, was only 0.01 seconds behind the Norwegian, demonstrating the incredible strengths of the top 6.
Team USA’s Breezy Johnson finished in 24th place, 2:09 seconds behind Marta Bassino, while neither Isabella Wright nor Tricia Mangan finished the difficult Roc de Fer course, which is known for its blind turns and demanding setup. The course has been used for Super-G races since the 1992 Albertville Olympics and the rather technical demanding flow of the course probably suited more technical skiers like Mikaela Shiffrin. Her Silver medal marks her 12th World Championship medal and also completes her Super-G World Championship medal count as she held a Gold from Åre in 2019 and a Bronze from Cortina in 2021.
Eagle-eyed watchers noticed that Mikaela Shiffrin was not wearing her original starting bib for the podium announcement in the finish area. Apparently, Mikaela had given her starting bib with the number 9 to a fan in the audience and had to borrow Breezy Johnson’s bib with the number 26 on it. It is just one example of her beautiful and humble nature and why spectators from all over the world adore her.
Next up we have the Men’s Super-G on Thursday, February 9, 2023. Tune in to NBC Peacock for all the action or read our daily recaps here on SnowBrains.
One thought on “Another Gold for Italy at the 2023 World Championships in Women’s Super-G Along With a Silver Medal for Mikaela Shiffrin”
Lovely ladies and awesome skier. Thanks for story, keep ‘em coming.