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Teen is youngest ever to win Olympic slalom gold

Gold medal winner Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States celebrates as she finishes the second run of the women's slalom at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. – AP photos
Gold medal winner Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States celebrates as she finishes the second run of the women's slalom at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. – AP photos
Teen is youngest ever to win Olympic slalom gold
Associated Press
Associated Press
American Mikaela Shiffrin is 18. She has become the youngest athlete, male or female, to win Winter Olympic slalom skiing gold.

She finished 0.53 seconds faster than veteran Marlies Schild of Austria. Marlies is one of Shiffrin's childhood favorites.

Shiffrin took the record for youngest Olympic slalom champion from Paoletta Magoni of Italy. She won gold at the 1984 Sarajevo Games when she was 19.

Schriffin, from Vail, Colo., completed a full set of slalom honors. They include Olympic and world championship gold medals and a season-long World Cup discipline title. All came before her 19th birthday next month.

Shiffrin had built a 0.49 advantage over Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany. She had a near-flawless first run.

Shiffrin hesitated to celebrate as she completed her run. She only seemed sure she had won when Schild and Zettel came across the finish area to raise her arms in triumph.

Shiffrin is the first American woman to get a slalom medal of any kind since Barbara Cochran won gold at the 1972 Sapporo Olympics.

She showed her patriotic colors. Shiffrin wore a stars-and-stripes design on her race helmet and a small painted flag on the right side of her neck.

Critical thinking challenge: Why did Mikaela hesitate to celebrate? How close was the race?


- Posted on February 21, 2014
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I think that Mikaela has proven no matter how old you are if you work hard you can achive any thing. A girl that is only 18 won the gold I think if that was she worked hard all the time. Any free time she had she praticed, she worked out. She didn't just put onme i would be so proud of myself. But she did not just pratce every once in a while and just sit at home and do nothing a pare skies and just win the gold.

This just goes to show that you can do anything with practice and this girl should be truly proud of herself for accomplishing such a feat.

It is great to hear about a young athlete who is putting in hard work and showing off her talent. I think that this will give the young athletes around the globe a lot more recognition because this could be anyone. This is one of the most monumental moments in her life and I hope she enjoys every bit of.

Mikaela is such an amazing Olympian and Im pretty sure everyone who saw her was in amazement! She should be so proud of herself knowing that she is the youngest person to win a gold medal in the slalom. She definitely got lucky beating veterans by 0.49 seconds! She is an amazing athlete and will have many more medals and she deserves to represent the United States of America!

It's amazing to hear about all the young athletes that are making it to the Olympics and winning medals. It is also great to hear than an American 18 year old was the youngest to win gold on slalom skiing. I admire all of these younger athletes because they make me feel like I can some day be amazing like they are. They give me hope, courage, and determination to continue to do the activities I do and never give up.

Mikaila Shiffrin was heisitant on celebrating because she was not sure whether she won the event or not. The time difference between the skiers were 0.53 and 0.49. It is vey hard to distinguish the time and also since Mikaila was very young she may have been wondering if she was dreaming.

Mikeala finished 0.53 seconds faster than veteran Marlies Schild. The race was extremely close. Mikeala was one second away from not winning a gold medal. She was the youngest to get the gold, but not only young, she was also fast doing it.

That is so cool that she is the youngest person to ever win gold on this event in the Olympics! She was probably ecstatic and probably even still is! Also, the fact that she is the first American woman to get a medal in the slalom since Cochran in 1972 is very cool!

Mikaela is a prime example that age and experience doesn't always mean you're going to win. Sometimes doing one little thing wrong can cause you to add extra seconds to your race time. She probably didn't celebrate because she wasn't to sure if she really won. Maybe she thought she was dreaming and wanted to be sure.

The youngest male or female to win gold in the slalom race Mikaela Shiffrin. She had a outstanding first run but didn't celebrate just yet. Her not celebrating immediately shows lots of maturity for someone her age. She only celebrated when the person she defeated came over to congratulate her. Personally I am very proud of her and I am astonished by her dedication and very hard work to earn her spot in the Olympics. She definitely proved she deserved it.