Mikaela Shiffrin stuns slalom rivals with two huge World Cup wins

    Story highlights

    • Shiffrin sets record winning margin in Aspen
    • Back-to-back slalom wins establish dominance
    • Vonn and Shiffrin both crash in giant slalom

    (CNN)The margins were so big, Mikaela Shiffrin barely knew what to say.

    Her back-to-back World Cup slalom victories in Aspen, Colorado, produced historic gaps between the American 20-year-old and the remainder of the world's best skiers.
      On Saturday, Shiffrin beat everyone by more than three seconds -- the largest winning margin in history for women's slalom at the World Cup, smashing a record set in 1968.
        "I don't think they are ever going to let me get away with three seconds ever again," the Olympic and world slalom champion said after that race. Yet she almost repeated the trick within 24 hours.
        Sunday's race was nearly identical. Shiffrin won by 2.65 seconds and it could have been more, had she not made a small mistake near the start of her final run.
        "Yesterday was such a big margin and I wondered what happened," Shiffrin said after her first run on Sunday.
        "This morning I woke and I was like, 'Oh, they're all playing a joke on me.' So I thought I had to ski even harder today. I just tried to attack even more.
        "I felt good yesterday, but that I could also raise the bar more."
        The victories mean Shiffrin has five straight World Cup slalom wins dating back to last season, a formidable indication of her form as she and rival Lindsey Vonn aim for this season's overall World Cup title.
        Shiffrin is expected to go head-to-head with Vonn as the former moves from her traditional domain of slalom into some of Vonn's favored speed events.
        An early chance to see U.S. skiing's two superstars go head-to-head ended in anticlimax on Friday, when both racers crashed out of the giant slalom.
        Vonn, coming back from a broken ankle and a dog bite injury to her hand, lost her left ski in Friday's first run. The 31-year-old, who said that kind of error had never happened to her before, only entered the giant slalom in Aspen.

        ...on to the next one

        A video posted by Lindsey Vonn (@lindseyvonn) on