In the opening run of a women’s World Cup giant slalom in Soldeu, Italy, Marta Bassino narrowly edged out her teammate Federica Brignone to secure an Italian one-two finish. The race was competitive, with New Zealand’s Alice Robinson finishing in third and Norway’s Thea Louise Stjernesund in fourth, all within two-tenths of a second of the lead.
Mikaela Shiffrin sat out the races to recover from a left knee injury, potentially risking her lead in the overall World Cup standings to Lara Gut-Behrami. The Swiss skier would need to win the race to overtake Shiffrin, ranked ninth after the first run and 0.61 seconds behind Bassino.
Shiffrin will also miss Sunday’s slalom in Andorra, with uncertainty surrounding her return to racing following her recent injury. Other top giant slalom racers who missed the race include Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova and Canada’s Valerie Grenier, both of whom suffered season-ending injuries.
Bassino, the junior world GS champion 10 years ago and winner of the 2021 World Cup title in the discipline, showed promise with her performance in Saturday’s race. She reflected on her solid run and the need to find the right feeling on her skis. While it hasn’t been an easy period for her with many mistakes and ups and downs, Bassino is focused on putting all the pieces together to regain consistency as she continues her journey towards becoming one of the best giant slalom racers in the world.