This article was originally published on the Alpine Canada website.
Erin Mielzynski gave a fantastic effort and came close to a podium finish in the Ladies’ Slalom on Saturday at the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships.
Mielzynski’s two-run combined time of 1:39.98 was good for a 6th place result in the final ladies event of the championships. Mielzynski, of Collingwood, ON, scored her first top 10 result at a World Championship event, with her previous best performance at the 2011 worlds in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany when she was 16th in the Slalom.
Saturday’s result also matches Mielzynski’s best result this season, as she finished 6th in the World Cup Slalom in Zagreb, Croatia on Jan. 4.
“It’s a good day, especially after last year and the last World Champs,” said Mielzynski, who was 17th in the Slalom at the 2013 worlds. “Today feels really great. I had two solid runs. It wasn’t enough for a podium but someone said the other day that there are a lot of things that come before a podium.”
Marie-Michèle Gagnon of Lac-Etchemin, QC charged and fought hard to finish in 10th place on Saturday, with a time of 1:41.41, her best World Championship performance since finishing 8th in the Giant Slalom in 2013.
“Obviously I want to be in medal contention but it’s a step forward after these last few races,” said Gagnon.
Candace Crawford of Toronto, ON was Canada’s final competitor in Saturday’s Slalom, finishing 30th in a time of 1:45.01.
The Slalom course proved tricky for many on Saturday, with seven of the top 30 skiers failing to finish the 2nd run. Paul Kristofic, Vice President of Sports at Alpine Canada Alpin, said the conditions during the afternoon run made it tough on many skiers.
“The second run was a drastically different set. It’s probably about 15 degrees warmer, so there were increasingly slushy conditions,” said Kristofic. “You could see how many DNFs there were in the second run. There was only one gear you could go, as hard as you could.”
The defending World Champion in Slalom from 2013 did not disappoint the hometown crowds as American Mikaela Shiffrin won the event in a time of 1:38.48 with an exciting 2nd run that saw her lose the lead after the first two intervals but then take it back down the final pitch. Sweden’s Frida Hansdotter was 2nd (1:38.82) and the Czech Republic’s Sarka Strachova rounded out the podium in 3rd(1:39.25).
FIS Alpine World Ski Championships Ladies’ Slalom (Canada’s placements)
Erin Mielzynski 1:39.98 (6th)
Marie-Michèle Gagnon 1:41.41 (10th)
Candace Crawford 1:45.01 (30th)